OLDS - The town's municipal planning commission has approved a proposal for a home-based pet grooming business.
The home where the business will operate is located at 21 Hawthorn Cres. The applicants are Michelle Menchenton, Gail Schmidt and Earl Menchenton.
The plan is for the business to operate Monday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., accepting three to five clients per day.
The commission was told no additional staff will be employed beyond the business owner(s) and parking would be provided via the home’s existing driveway.
Development officer Kyle Sloan said the proposal was circulated to eight neighbours.
Only one responded.
“I did receive an email from one neighbour -- just not for or against, but just cautioning us to be aware that it is a quiet street – not a cul de sac, but just a little loop,” Sloan said.
“The neighbour was concerned there are lots of children who play in this street and they were just concerned about any potential traffic increases.”
“While I appreciate the opportunity for someone opening a business in these difficult times, I'm also concerned for the safety of our children,” the email said.
“Hawthorn Cres. is a safe place for children, thanks to the low density of traffic. A business in the area will bring increased vehicular traffic that can only threaten the safety of children playing outside.”
Sloan said to address traffic concerns, town staff added a “strict condition” that the business can’t deal with more than the five clients per day it projected.
Another condition is that pets cannot remain in the premises overnight in order to prevent a flow of traffic picking up and dropping off animals in the morning and at night.
“It’s more of a one-at-a-time sort of turnover of the clients, so that the amount of traffic is negligible, I would say, for increase of traffic on this street,” Sloan said.
Coun. Mary Jane Harper said keeping rigid 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. business hours “would help with neighbour relations.”
Coun. Mitch Thomson wondered if it would be necessary to erect a sign telling customers where parking is available but others participating in the meeting didn’t feel that was necessary.
"We don’t stipulate that, for home hair shops or home tax businesses or stuff like that, where they don’t have a designated parking," Coun. Mary Anne Overwater said.
“They usually state that there’s enough parking on the driveway, but it doesn’t have a sign or anything.”
Operations director Scott Chant said if necessary, the business owner could point out to customers that parking is available on the driveway.
The proposed business was approved, subject to seven conditions:
• A business licence is required in order to undertake the business.
• The development must be constructed in accordance with approved conditions. Any revisions to the approved conditions must be submitted to the development authority for approval.
• The business must be operated so that the privacy and enjoyment of neighbours is not compromised.
• The maximum amount of area used for the business must be no more than 20 per cent or 30 square metres (333 square feet) of the gross floor area of the home.
• The business shall not be visited by more than five clients per day and 15 per week. Clients’ pets shall not remain on the premises overnight.
• Use and development of the home-based business shall conform to all other applicable requirements of the town’s land use bylaw unless relaxation of those requirements has been expressly granted.
• This permit may be revoked at any time, if in the opinion of the development authority, the operator has violated any provisions of the permit or applicable bylaw.