Council approves dealership

Will have to ensure that at least 20 per cent of the autos on display contain ‘low emission technology.’

Proponents of a car dealership on what is known as the Buckingham Browsorium site will have to ensure that at least 20 per cent of the autos on display contain ‘low emission technology.’

At a previous Nov. 2 meeting, council approved a plan by GP Vehicle Sales to convert the property at 934 and 940 Esplanade, opposite the Cenotaph on Warren Street, for use as a car dealership.

Councillors, based on a recommendation from staff, approved the application because GP’s business plan incorporates the sale of electric vehicles and other ‘green’ modes of transportation.

But council wanted assurances that the green hue to the 15-car outdoor display space, which wraps around the Esplanade and Warren street sides of the Browsorium, would be prominent on the high visibility site.

Staff was asked to negotiate a covenant to that effect before the amendment permitting the car lot is adopted as part of Ladysmith’s zoning bylaw.

At its Nov. 16 meeting council approved a revised agreement, which stipulates the proportion of low emission vehicles that will be on display and what constitutes ‘low emission technology’.

Part of the agreement between GP Vehicle Sales and the Town of Ladysmith states that “at least 20 per cent of the motor vehicles displayed for sale or lease” must be “motor vehicles making use of low emission technology engines.”

In the agreement “low emission technology’ is described as: “electric vehicles, electric hybrid vehicles, hydrogen and fuel cell vehicles, compressed air vehicles, neat ethanol vehicles, natural gas vehicles, or other similar technology that result in materially lower carbon emissions”.

There’s still one more potential bump in the road GP Vehicle Sales has to clear. The project will have to receive approval by B.C.’s Ministry of Transportation because the site is adjacent to the Trans Canada Highway (the Esplanade).