Form and character permit approved for Chilliwack waste plant

Council unanimously approved a development permit for the waste recycling project at Tuesday's council meeting.

Artist rendering of the proposed Aevitas waste recycling plant is part of the development permit information on the building's form and character being considered by council Dec. 6.

The next step in the proposed Aevitas waste recycling plant received unanimous approval Tuesday for the building’s form and character.

Chilliwack council considered the development permit for the building at its Jan. 6 meeting at city hall.

The DP is one of several regulatory requirements the proponents must complete before the proposal can proceed to the construction stage.

The applicant for the DP, listed as local architects Craven Huston Powers, is the local firm hired to design the waste recycling plant.

The DP for a portion of 7582 Cannor Road, will be subject to recommendations of the Design Review Panel and conditions as set out within the draft Development Permit. The permit calls for varied facade building materials, a unique wall mounted landscaping and a ‘green roof’ landscaped area.

The hazardous waste recycling plant has simmered in controversy ever since council approved the special industrial rezoning more than a year ago. It erupted after Aevitas Inc. proposed to build the new plant on a property less than 200 metres from the Fraser River.

The proposed plant is expected to recycle waste like mercury-containing light bulbs, and as well as transformer oil containing low-level PCBs inside a modern industrial building of 1896 square metres.

A coalition of First Nations and environmental groups rose up in opposition, and a petition against the location of the plant garnered thousands of signatures. The project’s location has drawn the fiercest opposition, despite the proponents’ efforts to reassure critics with a variety of engineered solutions.

About 1.78 hectares of the 9.1-hectare property was recently rezoned from an M4 Zone (Heavy Industrial) to an M6 (Special Industrial) Zone for the recycling and transfer station facility construction. All waste recycling and processing will be conducted entirely within an enclosed structure, and the proposed development has been designed to address this requirement.

A technical review has to be completed and a report by B.C. Ministry of Environment before a building permit for the project can be issued.