Artist Rendering of the proposed ICBC test facility.

Despite concerns, ICBC test centre proposal moves ahead

Township council grants third reading to new truck and motorcycle testing facility in Walnut Grove

In what appeared to be a tough decision to make, council granted third reading to ICBC’s proposed truck and motorcycle test centre in Walnut Grove in a 5-3 vote on April 23.

Councillors Petrina Arnason, Kim Richter and Michelle Sparrow were opposed. Charlie Fox was absent.

The centralized test centre, located at 20219 96 Ave., will be the first of its kind, focusing on new drivers wishing to operate commercial trucks and motorcycles.

At a public hearing in April, residents who live across the street from the proposal expressed concerns with increased noise and traffic from the test centre — two items that some members of council took issue with as well.

READ MORE: Residents concerned about noise, traffic from ICBC truck test facility

READ MORE: ICBC wants to build new type of truck driving test station in Walnut Grove

“Based on the density of the housing right across the street, and the noise that is going to be generated, as well as the increased truck traffic, I don’t believe this is a suitable location for that kind of a testing facility,” said Richter.

“I believe that the location should be further to the west, preferably in the industrial park, and not right across from high density residential. That’s just not fair to those people, so I’m not supporting this.”

Coun. Angie Quaale asked for clarification on whether back-up beepers will be used on the vehicles. Ramin Seifi, Township manager of engineering and community development, said that despite the proponent suggesting that beepers could be restricted, enforcing that would be impossible.

Coun. Michelle Sparrow said she used to live in this area, and is also concerned with traffic.

“I can’t actually imagine having even more vehicles, and having the traffic … coming and going and encouraging that extra amount of truck traffic in that area,” she said.

“As it is, it is already very difficult to maneuver, especially at certain times of the day.”

Coun. Petrina Arnason said she “really struggled” with the decision, as the proponent said ICBC has been looking for three years for a suitable location for the test centre.

“If there was enough sound mitigation then it wouldn’t be a problem, but overall I think as we grow, we have to make sure that we’re having really good and sound planning principles for potentially incompatible uses,” Arnason said.

“And so I think all things considered, I wouldn’t be supporting this, just because of those incompatibility issues.”

Coun. Bob Long, however, thinks the facility will not be as disruptive as some people fear.

“Considering some other uses that could be proposed on the property, I think this may not be all that bad,” he said.

“Especially with the buffering of the building, and the landscaping and so forth, on the south section. So I’m fine with it.”

Mayor Jack Froese agreed, adding that the ICBC test centre is very passive compared to what could move in under the current zoning.

“I think it’s a good use. I think that if it doesn’t go in, something will come in there that’s going to be a lot more detrimental to the residents,” he said.

“This is probably the best use we could get for it.”

At council’s following meeting on May 7, Richter put forward a motion to reconsider third reading, however that motion failed.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

VIDEO: May Day parade in Fort Langley

Crowds pack the streets to view 96th annual edition of annual march

Video: house fire in Langley Township

Monday morning fire spread from house to trees

Aldergrove family ecstatic over child’s recovery

Jaylene Prime and her family ‘pays back’ with juvenile arthritis fundraiser

Builder battling Langley Township looks toward Langley City

Eric Woodward said he has put out some feelers about ““the possibility of looking at some options”

VIDEO: Fire destroys legal grow op in Langley

Blaze also touched off grass fire

VIDEO: After the floods, comes the cleanup as Grand Forks rebuilds

Business owners in downtown wonder how long it will take for things to go back to normal

McPhee in boxing spotlight

‘Turmoil on 200th’ Pro Am Boxing event at Langley Events Centre

Fraser Valley Symphony ends 34th season

‘Romantic Rendezvous’ features Michelle Mares on piano on June 2

‘Find Your Fit’ at Aldergrove career event

Students and general community sessions set for Aldergrove Secondary

Couple survives being buried in mudslide on B.C. highway

The couple, from Saskatchewan, were en route to Nelson when a tree fell in their path

‘So grateful:’ Injured Bronco hockey player glad he’s alive, works on recovery

Ryan Straschnitzki was badly hurt in the accident: a spinal injury, broken ribs, a broken collar bone, and punctured lung

PHOTOS: Floodwaters rise and fall in Grand Forks

The flood-ravaged Kootenay-Boundary region begins to heal

Martin Mars waterbombers’ firefighting days are done

Wayne Coulson said his company still hopes to find a new home for the vintage aircraft

NHL playoffs weekly roundup

Vegas Golden Knights have done the impossible and have a chance at hoisting the Stanley Cup

Most Read