Impoundment yard rezoning done

M1 rezoning allows for impoundment yards at Yellowhead Centre

A quickening shortage of industrial lands has led one Prince Rupert company to gain approval for a Bylaw amendment to allow for impoundment lots in a light industrial zone (M1 classification) area at Yellowhead area along Prince George Street to Prince Rupert Boulevard.

Jay’s Custom Towing, which recently relocated to the area, received its notice of approval for a request to allow “Impoundment Yard” in M1 last Monday night at a Prince Rupert city council meeting with Proposed Zoning Amendment Bylaw No. 3376, 2015.

The notice met with no public feedback from the crowd in attendance, but the City did receive three comments prior to the meeting, offering concerns of noise, lighting, unsightliness and light pollution from the area.

“Fencing and screening are part of the development permit requirements,” said city planner Zeno Krekic, who was assured that all lighting will be facing away from residential areas within the impoundment lots.

After-hours business activity was the main concern of council, specifying back-up towing beeping noises and flashing lights potentially creating a problem with the community.

However, Coun. Barry Cunningham felt assured that Jay’s Custom Towing would do everything necessary to minimize disturbances.

“I think the operator of this particular yard would be more than willing to work with [the community] … I don’t think he’s going to go out of his way to antagonize a neighbourhood …. All that’s stopping him [from being respectful of nearby residents] is possibly safety. [Driving] up until the yard, he might by law have to have [the back-up beeping and flashing lights] on if he’s got a vehicle in tow.”

While Krekic advised council that it’s difficult to enforce after-hours restrictions in an industrial area, council did move for the applicant to disengage beeping sounds and flashing lights once reaching a certain part of the area in an added guideline for the development permit requirements.

Coun. Gurvinder Randhawa added that regardless of time of day, traffic laws might require the operator to have the towing vehicle’s back-up lights and beeping noises on. Council agreed to explore that possibility with the applicant.