Large banquet hall proposed for west Abbotsford

Project near Marshall and Clearbrook roads will go to public hearing in the fall

A proposal for a banquet hall that could accommodate 600 people in west Abbotsford will move to public hearing, although multiple councillors have expressed initial concerns about the project.

The project is located near the intersection of Marshall and Clearbrook roads, and would feature a 1,525-square-metre banquet hall located primarily on the second floor of an industrial building.

The site is zoned as agricultural but falls within industrial-business land use designation in the Official Community Plan (OCP), which states that churches and other assembly uses are not permitted.

At a public information meeting that was previously held for the project, many supporters wrote on their comment sheets that a banquet hall of that size is needed in Abbotsford, as people must currently go to Surrey for large gatherings.

However, the opponents noted that the use did not mesh with the surrounding industrial businesses that line that stretch of Marshall Road. Potential issues of parking and noise were also cited.

Coun. Dave Loewen said he had concerns about the impact of such a project on the future development of the area, which is intended for industry.

Council’s next meeting is not until Sept. 14, so the issue will be heard at a public hearing in the fall.