Noise By-law Update

Collingwood Council will once again talk about the noise bylaw and how it needs to deal with construction noise at the next meeting on April 30th.

Greg McNally addressed Council on behalf of the Collingwood Rod & Gun Club to request Council’s support to proceed with the Staff recommended option pertaining to noise permitted from shooting facilities.Mr. McNally provided an overview of the operations at the Rod & Gun Club, stating that the sounds from the gun club are comparable to other day-to-day noises.He also confirmed that the Club plans to build an enhanced berm this summer to help direct the noise out over the water.

Council accepted staff’s recommendations with regards to the Gun Club at the April 16th Council Meeting.

Thom Vincent, President of Balmoral Village which is presently under construction in Collingwood’s west end had sent Mayor Sandra Cooper and all members of council an email to express his views on the matter.

“As a developer in Collingwood, I would support the compromise of construction hours on the weekend, with any heavy equipment, from 0800-1800 on Saturdays. Not on Sundays and Holidays. If the Council should decide on any further time restrictions on the Saturday, this could/will have catastrophic effects on the development engine for Collingwood. I would expect that Council would request an economic and feasibility study/analysis to show the costs to the community, by further limiting any more construction time on Saturday.”

A meeting of Corporate & Community Services Standing Committee was held on Monday, April 9, 2018 in the Town of Collingwood Council Chambers. The committee welcomed public input into the Draft Noise Control By-law prior to forwarding the document to full Collingwood Council.

Public input focused on excessive after-hours evening and weekend construction noise.

South end resident Joanne Bowden said that the Town sells itself as a four-season recreation area and a terrific place to live. Now we appear to be suffering from our success as Bowden pointed out construction projects at the four corners of town and in between create weekend and evening noise that takes away from the pleasure of enjoying the outdoor activities we promote.

Former Collingwood Economic Development Officer Catherine Durrant had just finished saying something very similar to Ms. Bowden. Durrant said that excessive evening and weekend construction noise takes away from the enjoyment of sitting outside on a patio for example. Durrant used a personal example of a downtown renovation project she had initiated a few years ago. She said building construction ran from 7:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. Monday to Friday, with no evening or weekend activity out of respect for the neighbour’s.

Another resident wanted to talk about the benefits to the local labour force issue. He said that many of the developments presently under construction in Collingwood are bringing in out-of-town workers out of what they see as a necessity because of skill-sets required and the sheer volume of work underway.

A retired construction worker said that many of these non-union workers are forced to work evenings and weekends and are without the kinds of benefit packages that some local workers enjoy.

The Collingwood Rod and Gun Club on highway 26 in the town’s west end came under fire again from local condominium owners who want to regulate when gun range activity can take place.

C2018-06 Draft Noise Control By-law

RECOMMENDING THAT the Corporate and Community Services Standing Committee receive Staff Report C2018-06B, and authorize staff to finalize the draft Noise By-law including

1)Option 1 – Construction Equipment Noise
2)Option 1 – Shooting Facility Noise

Report #C2018-06(B)

April 9th, 2018

On March 5, 2018 the draft noise control by-law and staff report was presented to the Corporate and Community Services Standing Committee and was recommended to proceed with a public consultation period.

This Staff Report follows up on the public consultation, and outlines the changes to the draft by-law with clarification.

The municipality has grown significantly since 1987 and there is a critical need for noise regulation that the current by-law does not address. The proposed by-law as drafted will provide an up to date legal framework as well as more options for regulation, such as time restrictions, exemption permissions and specific prohibitions.

Approximately 30 people attended an Open House on March 21st at Collingwood Town hall. The Open House provided an opportunity for the public to voice concerns and speak to Town staff about the draft noise by-law. Those in attendance were given comment forms and were encouraged to submit feedback by April 2nd .

Comments received primarily were in opposition to construction on weekends, noise from speakers from private residential areas and private social events, and support for gun club proposed times.

Over 100 written comments have now been received by the Town of Collingwood regarding the draft noise by-law.

The majority of the comments deal with construction noise on weekends and the Collingwood Rod and Gun Club.

The by-law and report was reviewed by Town of Collingwood Department Heads on April 2, 2018 and was it recommended to proceed to Committee.

A review of current noise by-laws in similar municipalities has continued to assist in addressing public comments in understanding best practices. Many examples of how other communities deal with noise issues are referred to in the draft by-law.

The revised draft by-law has also been reviewed by the Town of Collingwood’s municipal lawyer, Eric Davis at Miller Thomson LLP.

The staff report outlines the differences between the current by-law and the draft noise by-law that is being considered.

1987 By-law

• Contains specific list of noises to regulate
• Specifics the noises must be unnecessary or irritating
• No exemption process – no opportunity for conditions
• No time restrictions
• Maximum fine $1,000

Draft By-law

• No specific listing – includes all noises – Nothing missed
• Noise that is “likely to disturb the inhabitants of the Town”
• Exemption process for Staff/Council consideration. Ability to give conditional exemptions.
• Time based restriction for certain activities – Zero tolerance
• Maximum fine $100,000 for corporations

CLICK HERE to view the full Staff Report and Draft By-law

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