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'Unapproved' Stouffville trade centre 'nothing more than a concept': New mayor
Dec. 5, 2014
By Sandra Bolan

Mayor Justin Altmann had Corebridge Development Corp. take down its sign advertising the Yiwu North America Trading Centre in front of its property on Main Street.

The developers complied, according to a media release sent out by the Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville Thursday night.

“This proposed development does not have any approved status. The consideration of the North American Trade Centre on Main Street is in its infancy and at this time represents nothing more than a concept,” Altmann stated in the media release.

In that release, Altmann also stated, in part, “ ... it was premature to be posted in advance of any council decision on the merits of the proposal.”

The building, at Main and Mostar streets, is the former home of the Southwire Canada cable plant.

In an April 15, 2014 staff recommendation to council, it stated: “The proposed repurposed building has the potential to be part of a positive catalyst for development along the western approach linking to adjacent properties and providing a transition to the larger employment area to the south.

“The proposal provides an opportunity to enhance and diversify the town’s economic base by providing a range and choice of suitable sites for employment uses, which support a wide range of economic activities and ancillary uses taking into account the needs of existing and future businesses consistent with the overall thrust of regional and provincial policies. The repurposing of the building provides for a unique opportunity to provide space for small employment area uses and act as a business incubator in the town.”

At that same meeting, council approved a zoning change that enabled the former copper wire plant to be turned into 80,000 square feet of retail space.

The site is also approved to have 180,000 square feet of office, industrial manufacturing and warehouse space.

A public meeting was held in January regarding the zoning amendment application. No one came, former mayor Wayne Emmerson told The Sun-Tribune earlier this year.

The only outstanding issue with the land is site plan approval, Emmerson said earlier this year.

The site plan deals only with the outside of the building, how it looks, he said.

There are however, technical studies Corebridge officials must also complete, Andrew McNeely, the municipality’s CAO told The Sun-Tribune back in October.

Once they are complete, that is when “staff will initiate an evaluation of the proposal for its planning and economic development merits,” states the press release.

Back in October, Altmann told The Sun-Tribune “I’m not against the project, just where it is.” He would prefer it be constructed in Gormley.

Altmann, who was in meetings and preparing for tomorrow’s Santa Claus parade, did not return a call from the York Region Media Group.