July 21st, 2024

I-XL plant site rezoned to allow for warehouse to be used

By Medicine Hat News on July 5, 2024.


Portions of the former I-XL plant site lands have been rezoned to allow a warehouse to be put back in use.

Council voted 6-2 in favour of rezoning a parcel of land at 620 Porcelain Ave., to become Business Industrial zone, from “mixed use.”

That would allow the current owner to use a larger building on the site as a warehouse, though two councillors voted against the change stating that, while it is a distance from the Historic Clay District, more protection and focus for the general area is needed.

“A zoning change could bring a lot of things,” said Coun. Robert Dumanowski. “It could be much more industrial (in the future) … It’s on the edge of a historically designated area.

“The preservation of those lands is critical. And there’s a cost to that. It pains me, but in principle I’m opposed.”

The parcels containing the former brick plant site were folded into the Historic Clay District after it closed following flooding in 2010. That is managed by the Friends of Medalta Society.

Land holdings to the north however, were generally designated for future development.

Current owner Michael Bolan also told council there are no large immediate changes planned, but he wants to use a warehouse onsite for storage.

“There is no large vision yet, it’s a big beautiful piece of property that needs a lot of time,” he said. “My thought process behind it is utilizing the existing buildings that were built for an industrial use.

I don’t plan for a big booming facility, we’re talking small vehicle repair and my own construction equipment storage … it’s not a final vision.”

Council approved the rezoning after discussing potential uses, access and proximity to the Historic Clay District.

Coun. Cassi Hider also voted against the change, citing the work done by Medalta and at the I-XL plant site.

Other councillors felt the structure was far enough from the Medalta complex, and the change should be allowed.

“Business industrial and mixed use have a lot of overlap,” said city planner Brad Irwin, outlining light manufacturing as common between the two, but residential use limited to mixed-use designation.

“It’s a large site … and this is an incremental step to address the overall plan (for the land).”

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