Contributed illustration Plans for a downtown addictions treatment centre were approved by a City of Red Deer appeal board on Wednesday.

Red Deer’s Dream Centre for addictions treatment is approved on appeal

Several conditions are attached to the approval

The Red Deer Dream Centre for addictions treatment can open in a former downtown nightclub after winning approval Wednesday.

The Red Deer subdivision and development appeal board overruled a previous denial of the project, which is proposed for 4614 50th Ave., but it attached a number of conditions.

These include making the Dream Centre operators responsible for the replacement and repair of any damage that might be done to public property by its clients.

Before construction begins, the operators must also provide plans to the city that incorporate crime prevention through environmental design concepts.

Outdoor storage at the site is also prohibited.

On Oct. 16, the municipal planning commission refused a development permit for the Dream Centre on the grounds that it was not compatible with existing developments or the municipal development plan for downtown.

But the appeal board felt the use falls within the Land Use Bylaw for downtown, which allows for offices, institutional facilities and temporary care facilities.

The appeal board also determined that the live-in alcohol treatment centre offers another kind of residential component for the downtown.

“The board is persuaded by the argument that the revitalization of an existing building that is currently vacant, and changing its use, will create more daytime activity in an area of the downtown that currently consists of evening use by patrons of drinking establishments,” the written decision states.

Although opponents argued the city’s core had too many social service agencies, the appeal board found there wasn’t another development like this in the downtown.

The Dream Centre for addictions treatment would “supplement the adjacent uses rather than resulting in a concentration of similar uses,” it said.

The appeal board did not consider street or lot parking to be an issue and suggested the municipal planning commission, by citing parking concerns in its denial of the project, was holding the Dream Centre to a higher standard than other businesses.

The appeal board noted the Dream Centre’s application now requires fewer parking spaces, as the downstairs gathering/assembly hall was reduced to 200 people from a previous 600.

The board also approved of the addition of an on-site kitchen and larger recreational space in the revised application.

Noting that the former nightclub is located on arterial roads and away from residential neighbourhoods, the board determined that relocating the centre to another part of the city could create more negative impacts for residents.

“The board is persuaded that the proposed development supports the ongoing redevelopment and revitalization of the downtown area,” encouraging investment, attracting new businesses and enhancing a currently underutilized area, it said.

The appeal board’s decision can be appealed within 30 days to the Court of Appeal on a question of law.



lmichelin@reddeeradvocate.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Fracking caused March 2019 earthquake near Sylvan Lake, say scientists

4.18 earthquake south of Sylvan Lake rattled doors and windows as far as Red Deer

Possible Red Deer cougar sighting creating a stir

Many have posted their own cougar stories online since Advocate story ran last Friday

Red Deer’s emergency management team is watching to learn how Newfoundland handles its massive snowfall

“We’ve had extreme snowfalls before,” says co-ordinator Karen Mann — and will again

Red Deer city council wants answers before re-zoning for women’s shelter expansion

Is the creek escarpment stable enough for construction?

Soldiers trade rifles for snow shovels to help dig out St. John’s

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — Military personnel armed with shovels spread out across… Continue reading

WATCH: Canadian kid shovelling snow video goes viral

Rory might just be Canada’s most popular toddler right now, thanks to… Continue reading

Your community calendar

Jan. 22 Downtown House Senior Center (5414 43 St.) in Red Deer… Continue reading

David Marsden: Warm tales about the cold

The recent deep freeze has rocked all of us. Every Red Deer… Continue reading

Soldiers trade rifles for snow shovels to help dig out St. John’s

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — Military personnel armed with shovels spread out across… Continue reading

Canadian airlines feel the pressure of flight-shaming and the ‘Greta effect’

MONTREAL — Swedish may not be the lingua franca of the aviation… Continue reading

Trump thanks farmers for backing him through China trade war

AUSTIN, Texas — President Donald Trump thanked farmers Sunday for supporting him… Continue reading

CETA can serve as template for post-Brexit Canada-U.K. trade deal

CALGARY — Canada’s trade agreement with the European Union should serve as… Continue reading

MEC cuts costs, boosts perks in effort to turn around struggling retailer

VANCOUVER — Mountain Equipment Co-op is making major changes as it “needs… Continue reading

Most Read