Editorial: The Church Brewing Company is Good for Wolfville

At 8:30AM on January 8th, the Committee of the Whole of the Town of Wolfville met to consider the development of the proposed Church Brewing Company at the corner of Main St. and Seaview Ave. The Committee had met in October 2018 to discuss concerns of residents who had raised issue with the development of the business near their homes.

The January 8th meeting discussed amending the definition of ‘Accessory Use’ within the Municipal Planning Strategy and Land Use Bylaw to allow for off-site sales, introduce a framework to consider new applications for craft beverage land uses, improve the buffering provisions between commercial and residential uses, and provide the Development Officer the ability to request additional information on potential nuisance (smells, traffic, etc.) from existing or proposed businesses.

The recommendation to the Wolfville Town Council was to accept the amendments and continue with first reading to eventually recommend the amendments for provincial review and change of the Municipal Planning Strategy and Land Use Bylaw, which would allow The Church to get up and running.

If Wolfville wants to prove that it’s open for business and growth The Church Brewing Company must go ahead.

The residents who live on Seaview Avenue have taken the time and effort to make their concerns known to the Town of Wolfville in public meetings, and even at Acadia by putting up posters displaying a graph of the Church’s proposed brewing capacity. If the prospect of a successful local business alarms long-time residents of Wolfville, there is a much deeper issue at play.

The opening of The Church represents opportunity in Wolfville. Already over fifty employees have been hired from administrative staff to waitresses to cooks for the restaurant. Many of them are students who are trying to make a living to pay for rent, groceries, and their education. By saying no to The Church, you’re saying no to a generation of students trying to get jobs, complete their degrees, and throw off the stereotypes of laziness and entitlement that surround us. Why should students be denied the opportunity to work?

There is no doubt that the Town of Wolfville has fundamentally changed. It is no longer the sleepy town of the 1970s or 80s content on a quaint existence. Wolfville now commands a national presence with the success of local wineries, breweries, and Acadia alumni. Recognizing that the town has changed and is continually changing is key to not only Wolfville’s prosperity, but also the growth of Nova Scotia. This province suffers from outmigration that deprives it of the its best and brightest, but small businesses and tourism offer Nova Scotia a way to pick itself up.

There will obviously be drawbacks to success. If some of the drawbacks include more trucks on Seaview Ave, more noisy tourists in Wolfville spending their time and money, and more local farmers selling their hops or produce to breweries like The Church, then the cost is worth it.

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Read the judgement by Judge Warner. Learn about by-laws and zoning regulations.

Beautiful building. I was married there in the 1990’s. Glad it’s being preserved & used. Hoping someone could tell me the name of that church when it was a church and when it stopped being used as a church?

We were the last to be married there in May 2012. It was St Andrews United Church.

What an amazing project for Wolfville the Annapolis Valley and Nova Scotia. The founders are extremely knowledgable and award winning in the craft beer and food industry on national level. The crafstmanship of the original building and its restorations and additions are second to none and must be seen. Further, The overall mission of The Church Brewing Company mission is community oriented and designed to give back and support local. A spectacular place on so many levels and a must visit!

Thanks for sharing Lee-Ann, Wolfville has never been a sleepy town … industry & tourism flourished in the 80’s, 90’s and before then! We’ve seen too many businesses (and commercial base tax dollars) leave town because of restraints. The Church Brewing Co seems to be requiring more than originally anticipated and this is where problems arise…it is not what was asked for. There is no question before it even opens that area will be a traffic nightmare. Tall buildings have closed in Main Street, the street was narrowed, and now a factory! Town planning made space for production facilities in an industrial area away from the downtown core. I’m sure this new food & beverage establishment will be lovely but I’m tired of approval for amendments mid-construction. Be up front in the first place.

I very shallow piece. Does not mention once the issue of “accessory use” and the prohibition of unlimited off-site sales of products in a C-1 zone adjacent to residential neighbourhoods pursuant to Judge Warner’s well reasoned ruling which is the only issue at play here.

You need to do more research before expressing your opinions

Grade C+