Donnelly Law's next hearing is set to begin November 25, 2013 in King Township. Here is a bit of background, published in Environmental Defence's Greenbelt Watch newsletter. The Ontario Municipal Board is set to hear an important case regarding whether to allow future development on the Oak Ridges Moraine, beginning November 23, 2013. The hearing will take place in King Township, the site of a proposed 600-person outdoor banquet/event facility, bed and breakfast, and children’s camp for 200 campers. The proposal was unanimously rejected by King Township Council in August 2013. The Township will now appear alongside the Stewards of the Moraine Inc. (the “Stewards”), a local residents group, in opposition to the project. STORM is a participant in the hearing. The site, at Highway 400 and Lloydtown-Aurora Road, is designated Countryside Area in the Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan (“ORMCP”). The site has been a source of controversy for years, ever since the land was altered without any permits beginning in 2002. Topsoil was removed and a series of hills bulldozed into place, creating a “water feature”, with a pond and approximately one kilometre long.
The Township of King and the Stewards will argue the banquet facility is commercial development, not a “major recreational” facility as defined in the ORMCP. The Stewards are also concerned with road safety from the projected increase in traffic, and noise from the dance floors of three wedding receptions late on summer evenings. David Donnelly (Donnelly Law), counsel to the Stewards, comments “The connection between the children’s camp and banquet facility has not been established. How can a children’s camp be entitled to a liquor licence?”