A group of Campbellton residents are urging city council to ban shipping containers on residential properties.
Thirty-two property owners presented council with a petition this week suggesting the city make moves to implement “a bylaw governing the placement of storage containers on residential property.”
The petition, stipulates, however, that shipping containers be allowed “for temporary use on residential property of up to three months during renovation work on said residential property.”
This isn’t the first time council has been presented with a suggestion to restrict the use shipping containers, or sea cans.
In 2013, city staff recommended city council ban the permanent use of shipping containers on both residential and commercial properties, in response complaints from the public that the containers were an eye sore.
Business owners who use shipping containers were up in the arms over the prospect and spoke out against the measure at a public hearing and then again at a public meeting held for city staff to gather further input from the public. It was enough that the issue was eventually put on the back burner.
Most business owners said they used the containers because they provided cheap storage space in a tight economy and voiced concerns that the ban would hurt their business economically.
“Every small business is hanging on by its teeth,” said Harvey Hiquebran at the time. “A container comes in and it’s very helpful. You can put up a container behind your building and use it as storage. They’re fire proof and have a considerable savings.”
One woman, Sandy Green, at that same time also defended the use of the containers on residential property.
She explained that her containers were not visible from the road.
“It really does upset me because I have invested a lot of time and money and they’re not an eyesore,” she said. “I’ve colour-coded them to my home.”
This time around, it’s one large shipping container in particular that has raised the ire of residents.
According to petitioners, a neighbour parked a size-able sea storage container parallel to the property line between the home in question and the next door neighbour. The neighbour wrote in the petition to the city that the container is visible from the sun deck in his backyard.
“Not very aesthetic for myself and neighbours as well, a negative for the selling of my property.”