A new 0.65 hectare light industrial lot is being proposed at 741 Muskoka Road 3 North, which will serve as the new home for Tasso Lake Heating Solutions Inc.
The lot severance application and minor lot setback exemption requests were before Huntsville’s planning and minor adjustment committees on June 13, under the company name of Unity Masonic Lodge 376 Inc.
“Tasso Lake Heating is a firm that’s relocated to Huntsville, bringing many of their core employees with them, and have since hired additional staff members. The community’s been very good for them to the point where their business is growing. They’re bursting at the seams in their current location and they’re looking to relocate their operation to this site and as well they’re looking to hire, once this has been constructed, probably an additional six staff members,” land surveyor Paul Goodridge, representing the company’s owners Jan and Elizabeth Sirek, told committee.
The company is currently situated on Hanes Road. Goodridge said they’ve been working with planning staff for the past year and a half trying to find an appropriate location for the business and the pros have definitely outweighed the cons in that particular location.
He said the conceptual drawings for another site which was being considered was for a post and beam type structure “so it’d be very much a Muskoka-looking building from the front, which I think hopefully will reduce that impact of an industrial use on the surrounding neighbourhood,” said Goodridge, adding that the building will be located in a transverse manner, perpendicular to the road, “primarily to also provide buffering from the residential land uses on the west side of the road because the front of the building is going to be their show room.”
Goodridge said the applicants plan on having an educational centre for the training of their staff, which will also be open to the public to rent as well. He said the second storey of the building will serve as their office space and the back of the building will serve as their warehouse and fabrication shop. “So it does provide all the visual barrier and the sound barrier for any of the noise that may be generated in the shop area. You’ll notice we’ve also left a lease area to the east of the sheet metal shop and the Sireks do have somebody interested in leasing that area, at least in the short-term, and we’ve put it into the building to account for future expansion of Tasso Lake Heating. Like I said, they want this to be their final home.”
Councillor Jonathan Wiebe asked about the entry point to the lot and whether the District Municipality of Muskoka, which looks after Muskoka Roard 3 North, has made any comment on that.
Goodridge said the entry points would basically remain the same as they currently are on the lot. He said meetings have taken place with the District regarding an old culvert in the area and an “assessment of the site lines for the access into this site because there will be heavy truck traffic coming in for deliveries and we wanted to make sure that we had a safe entry point at both ends,” said Goodridge.
Town Planner Elizabeth Reimer told committee that the site plan application has not yet been submitted. Once that is done, staff will examine the proposed entrances in relation to parking and flow. She said they will also need an entrance permit from the District. “We’ll work in cooperation with the District to figure out what works for us on site and then on the road,” she said.
Deputy Mayor Karin Terziano asked about the extent of the noise and whether the cutting of metal would be done indoors. Goodridge said it would be. He also said you do hear the noise “but it’s not overpowering.” He said the sound is appropriate for the zone category that is on the property “but they do want to be good neighbours and we do realize it’s industrial right across the road from a residential neighbourhood,” he said, adding that the buffering and siting of the building is being planned accordingly. Committee also heard that the operation runs Monday to Friday.
The severance and requested setbacks were approved by committees. Councillor Bob Stone left during discussions regarding the applications, citing a personal conflict.
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