R4LO's NEWSLETTER About Amazon Delivery Station on Cornwall (Sept 11, 2020)

 

OVER 3,000 AND COUNTING SIGN R4LO PETITION OPPOSING AMAZON SERVICE DELIVERY STATION:

AMAZON EXPERIENCES SERVICE DELIVERY STATION ACCEPTANCE PROBLEMS:

  • Teetersboro New Jersey rejected an Amazon Service Delivery Station.

Officials determined that the proposed use as a vehicle depot did not meet the proper use of wholesaling, storage, or warehousing. (Source TAP IP LLC)

Follow link: https://www.tapinto.net/towns/hasbrouck-heights-slash-wood-ridge-slash-teterboro/sections/news/articles/teterboro-denies-amazon-s-zoning-application-for-huyler-street-site

  • Grand Island New York (Niagara Falls/Buffalo) rejected an Amazon Facility.

Follow link: https://buffalonews.com/news/local/amazon-gives-grand-island-10-million-reasons-to-say-yes/article_47928406-d327-11ea-82a8-9f599ed64289.html

  • Oakville Ontario:

Town of Oakville staff have deemed Amazon’s proposed Oakville Service Delivery Station to be a warehousing operation which is a permitted use for the property’s E2 zoning. The Service Delivery Station would be in a building owned by H&R REIT (Real Estate Investment Trust) at 2175 Cornwall Road just west of Ford Drive.

It is unclear however how Amazon’s proposed use of the site was considered to be warehousing when in fact nothing would be warehoused there, the actual use to be something quite different, and a use that would bring many incompatible elements into South East Oakville (details follow).

In fact, Amazon on their own web-site describes their Delivery Stations as follows:

“In these buildings, customer orders are prepared for last-mile delivery to customers.”

I.e.. Customer orders are packaged elsewhere (actual warehouses), taken to Service Delivery Stations for sorting and aggregating into delivery routes and then normally immediately dispatched to Amazon’s retail customers.

Follow link: https://www.aboutamazon.com/amazon-fulfillment/our-fulfillment-centers/fulfillment-in-our-buildings

Additionally, job postings for the Oakville Service Delivery Station Operations Manger position, describe the position as follows:

“The Ops Manager, Station Operations has complete responsibility for inbound, outbound and sortation operations at an Amazon Delivery Station (24/7 last-mile carrier site). Delivery Stations represent the last leg of our delivery network. Customer packages travel from our Fulfillment Centers to regional Sort Centers and finally end up at our local Delivery Stations where packages are sorted and dispatched directly to the customer via delivery service providers (couriers).”

  • Due to a lack of clarity Town Staff have twice rejected Amazon’s and H&R REIT’s Site Plan Application. The third version of the Site Plan Application has been under development for several months. Site Plan Applications provide details of the proposed changes to land, buildings, streets, utilities etc.

Follow link to initial Site Plan Application Details: https://www.oakville.ca/business/sp-35009.html

  • Amazon has not yet filed the required Operations Plan which among other things would provide details of how the Service Delivery Station’s operation would affect the surrounding community.

  • Town Council has decided that an independent 3rd party review is required of the Traffic Impact Study for the Oakville Amazon Service Delivery Station. That review cannot proceed until the third version of the Traffic Impact Study is received.

  • Town Council has decided that considering the controversial nature of the Amazon Service Delivery Station final approvals for it will be made by Oakville Town Council.

NOTE: A Cambridge Ontario Amazon Service Delivery Station will be located in an isolated industrial park zoned M3 for heavier industrial operations.

Follow link: https://www.kitchenertoday.com/local-news/amazon-to-open-delivery-station-in-cambridge-2643451#:~:text=Online%20retailer%20Amazon%20has%20announced,of%20jobs%20when%20it%20does.

R4LO HAS CONSULTED WITH WESTON CONSULTANTS AND INITIATED A FUND RAISING CAMPAIGN:

While Town Councillors and various residents’ associations seek to mitigate the effects of the Amazon Service Delivery Station and R4LO is grateful for that, R4LO intends to oppose it.

Opposition to the Amazon development will be resisted stiffly by the lawyers and planning consultants (McIntosh Perry Consulting Engineers) working for Amazon and the property owner H&R REIT.

Consequently R4LO has consulted with Weston Consultants, a firm with both expertise in the evaluation of developments such as the Amazon Service Delivery Station as well as knowledge of the corresponding local/regional/provincial approval processes.

Weston’s first mandate will be to challenge the use of the building owned by H&R REIT at 2175 Cornwall Road for the proposed Amazon Service Delivery Station and to go on record in this regard.

Weston will undertake on our behalf:

  • Reviews of all appropriate background and planning information pertaining to the Amazon development including information on previous approvals;

  • Acquisition of land/site information including easements and MZO (Ministerial Zoning Order) information;

  • Meeting with residents as required;

  • Preparation of a Planning Opinion letter on the Amazon development and..

  • Representing residents at Oakville Planning & Development Committee and Town Council meetings;

Funds are required to pursue this challenge particularly since R4LO expects that the challenge will eventually have to be fought at the provincial LPAT (Local Planning Appeal Tribunal).

This funding is needed urgently because the 3rd submission of the Service Delivery Station’s Site Plan Application, having been under development for several months, is expected anytime. At this time R4LO is encouraging residents to write cheques for $50 and up or as you feel appropriate payable directly to:

“Weston Consulting” with the notation “2175 Cornwall/Amazon”

Cheques can be provided to R4LO in 2 ways.

Either:

  • Bring the cheques to the R4LO Cashier at the Thursday, Sept. 17 Community Update Meeting (details noted preceding)

OR

  • Mail cheques to: Residents4aLivableOakville,

P.O. Box 61032, Maple Grove Village,

Oakville, ON., L6J 7P5

R4LO will tally and courier the cheques to Weston Consulting.

If cash is the preferred method of contributing, either bring it to the R4LO Cashier at the Sept. 17 meeting or ask the R4LO Cashier at the meeting how else it can be contributed or contact our e-mail address (at end).

ABOUT R4LO AND ITS ROLES:

R4LO (Residents4aLivableOakville) is a group of Oakville residents who are concerned about:

  • developments that would have detrimental effects on Oakville’s official Livable Oakville Plan;

R4LO’s current concerns are:

  • the intrusion of an incompatible Amazon Service Delivery Station into South East Oakville and the detrimental effects it will have on Oakville’s Livable Oakville Plan;

  • the precedent that will be set for future similar proposed facilities if this Service Delivery Station is allowed;

R4LO’s roles include analyzing proposals and developing questions and arguments, organizing residents to ask their questions and make their arguments, distributing informational material, coordinating events and raising the necessary funds to argue against this development.

SOME REASONS WHY IT DOESN’T MAKE SENSE TO LOCATE THE AMAZON SERVICE DELIVERY STATION AT ITS PROPOSED LOCATION AT 2175 CORNWALL ROAD, JUST WEST OF FORD DRIVE:

The proposed Amazon Oakville Service Delivery Station would be located in a former warehouse building owned by H&R REIT (Real Estate Investment Trust) at 2175 Cornwall Road, Oakville.

As noted preceding, (under “Amazon Experiences Service Delivery Station Acceptance Problems-Oakville”) Amazon would not be using the building for a warehousing operation.

Full details of the first Site Plan Application to the Town of Oakville for the proposed Service Delivery Station are available at the following link:

Follow link to first Site Plan Application Details: https://www.oakville.ca/business/sp-35009.html

While this first submission of the Plan from McIntosh Perry, Consulting Engineers was rejected by the Town due to a lack of clarity, it does provide some relevant information about the Service Delivery Station. The second submission of the Plan was also rejected and a third submission has been under development for several months.

  1. Traffic and Congestion:

R4LO believes that far too much traffic for practical purposes will be generated by the proposed Service Delivery Station along a stretch of Cornwall Road that includes a nearby level railroad crossing and fire station and the already busy intersections of Ford/Cornwall, Ford/Royal Windsor and Maple Grove/Cornwall.

The effects of this significant increase in traffic will however ripple across South East Oakville, particularly if there are any kinds of delays/obstructions in the area such as trains on the nearby crossing.

The Site Plan Application prepared by McIntosh Perry indicates that the Service Delivery Station would operate 24/7 and that there will be provision for on-site parking for 667 delivery vans and 221 on-site employee vehicles. Tractor-Trailer transport trucks would bring already packaged goods from Amazon’s Fulfillment Centres located elsewhere to the Service Delivery Station to be sorted by the over 200 employees there for final delivery to Amazon’s retail customers.

While an exact Operations Plan has not yet been submitted, it is possible that based on delivery van, on-site employee and delivery van driver volumes, exit rates and start/return times as provided in the McIntosh Perry Site Application Plan, this Service Delivery Station would generate the following additional traffic on the short stretch of Cornwall Road west of Ford Drive:

  • Over 1320 daily delivery van movements (660 vans out and 660 vans in) starting at 07:00am with delivery vans exiting at the rate of 62/hour to each make 8 hours of deliveries. Van exits would therefore continue for 10.75 hours until 05:45pm. Delivery vans would start returning between 03:00pm and continue until 01:45am the next day, if not sooner;

  • Over 1320 daily on-site employee vehicle movements with 220 on-site employees working in 3 shifts (220 employees in and 220 employees out 3 times/day);

  • Over 1320 daily delivery van driver movements required for the 660 vans (660 drivers in and 660 drivers out) starting before 07:00am and lasting until the last of the 660 vans exit;

  • 7 Transport Truck movements/hour from early morning until evening, although the Study is unclear about volumes;

  • The study did not include volumes for facility maintenance vehicles (eg. garbage, food, van maintenance…) nor management staff;

Due to the significant additional traffic volume into and out of the Delivery Station a new signaled exit from the property onto Cornwall Road is required.

    2.Pollution:

Pollution studies have not been performed for this facility but are required. Pollution sources from the Facility itself are unknown as well as those of idling trucks etc.

    3.Noise and Lighting:

Only high level provincial standards have been addressed.

   4.Safety:

The congestion caused by the large increase in traffic volumes in an area not designed for that volume will be a source of accidents.

   4.Unknowns:

The Amazon Service Delivery Station property owner, H&R REIT, has requested that the part of their property which is in the Parkway Belt West and is currently controlled by the Ontario Gov’t. with a Ministerial Zoning Order, be released from the Parkway Belt West without any restrictions on what they could do with the land.

R4LO does not believe that H&R should have uncontrolled use of this land.

 

R4LO’s OBJECTIVES:

R4LO is pursuing many goals and objectives, including:

  • Stopping this development

  • Understanding how this proposed Amazon Service Delivery Station came to be considered acceptable when:

  • It is not a warehouse operation and is therefore inconsistent with the zoning of the property;

  • Its operation is clearly inconsistent with the residential neighbourhood it’s being dropped into;

  • Other municipalities are rejecting similar Amazon facilities;

  • Understanding why the property’s owners want adjacent property to be released from Government controlled lands and that they be given uncontrolled rights to develop it;

  • Understanding the commitment of the Ontario Provincial Government to this facility;

  • Ensuring that all necessary studies (eg. traffic, pollution…) are performed and performed comprehensively;

  • Raising public awareness of the many serious issues related to this Amazon facility;

R4LO’S ACCOMPLISHMENTS TO-DATE AND ONGOING ACTIVITIES:

  1. Organized residents for the purpose of opposing the Amazon Service Delivery Station;

  2. Initiated a petition that has been signed by over 3,000 concerned residents;

  3. Initiated an ongoing sign campaign with many signs already installed;

  4. Consulted with expert consultants to review required studies from the developers;

  5. Raising, ongoing, campaign funds;

  6. Liaising, ongoing, with Ward 3 Town Councillors and Joshua Creek and Chartwell-Maple Grove Ratepayers’ Associations.

  7. Reviewing, ongoing, Town and developer related activities;

NOTE: R4LO was responsible for bringing to the Town’s attention unapproved work in progress at the site and the issuance of a Stop Work Order. This unapproved work demonstrates the developer’s lack of respect for protocols and legalities.

R4LO’S PLANS:

R4LO plans to:

  1. Maintain residents’ awareness of this Service Delivery Station and its detrimental effects on the community through Newsletter updates, sign campaigns, R4LO’s web-site and FaceBook Page, Community Meetings (refer to Community Meeting noted preceding) etc….;

  2. Work with R4LO’s consultants Weston Consulting;

  3. Raise the necessary funds to oppose this Service Delivery Station;

  4. Liaise with our Ward 3 Town Councillors and ratepayers’ associations.

HOW YOU CAN GET INVOLVED AND HELP: