ugg summer boots Coco Group poised to start big box project within months following OMB ruling
After eights years of legal battles, design and construction could start within months on a new big box centre next door to Ojibway park lands, a spokesman for the Coco Group said Tuesday.
exact timing is to be determined, said Anthony Rossi, director of government relations for Coco Group. just got the decision yesterday, we are reviewing it now and then will bring our proposal forward. big box project at the corner of Matchette Road and Sprucewood Avenue has been delayed since 2007 following city council approval. The citizens group Save Ojibway fought to legally stop the proposed 450,000 square foot shopping centre over the potential environmental impact to nearby protected lands.
But an Ontario Municipal Board ruling released Monday dismissed the group appeal giving the Coco Group the right to proceed after site plan approval from the city.
Early plans for the big box centre call for three or four major anchor tenants inside a commercial plaza that would include several smaller retail outlets.
The shopping centre will be located across the street from the protected Ojibway Prairie Nature Reserve and Tallgrass Prairie. It will be next door to the Ojibway Nature Centre.
Save Ojibway wanted the vacant lands owned by Coco preserved and attached to the already protected lands, which include several species at risk.
Despite losing the OMB challenge, the group leader Nancy Pancheshan said efforts to stop the project will continue.
don think anybody in the community wants to see Ojibway impacted by this, Pancheshan said. feel incredibly saddened (by the ruling) for Ojibway and the species that call it home. Coco will ensure the big box centre complies with the species at risk permit granted a year ago by Ontario natural resources ministry,
as stringent as you will find, he said. test is not only to preserve the species at risk, but enhance their environment. Coco Group will hand over 10 acres to the city so it can be restored to its natural state as a buffer for the Ojibway Park, Rossi said.
Nancy Pancheshan is shown along Matchettte Road in Windsor, Ont., in this file photo. She is the leader of Save Ojibway ” a group that is concerned about the environmental impact of a big box development in the area.
Some local critics have said the big box project isn needed because of the high volume of vacant commercial space in Windsor.
was all addressed in our planning stages, Rossi said. is a growing and great community. We do a lot of work in Windsor and we are very confident in the products we are providing. Coco Group owns the Ambassador Golf Course across the street from the planned shopping centre and Ambassador Estates, a major townhouse development on the property next to the golf course.
MPP Percy Hatfield (NDP said he was unsure if anything could stop the project following the OMB ruling.
only thing I could see is if city council said it would buy the property from Coco, he said. there could be a land swap or sale and then take it from there.
think people are starting to open their eyes when it comes to the environment. Imagine what we could have there. If you include Ojibway Shores, you could have park land connected all the way to the river. But there is no 11th hour (plan) to stop this unless the Coco Group decided not to proceed.