Sarnia ended years of wrangling and rejected a bid by Sifton Properties last week to develop a large block of homes and commercial space on Modeland Road.
The London-based developer wanted to build 64 homes, a commercial plaza and a four-storey retirement at the northwest corner of Modeland and Michigan.
But residents and city staff were strongly opposed to the application on the grounds Sarnia has too many vacant commercial buildings already, it would impede traffic and it would open the floodgates to a succession of strip malls on Modeland.
Sifton, whose persistence riled officials and neighbours, is expected to appeal the decision to the Ontario Municipal Board.
“Too much effort and too much money has gone into this application,” company agent Eldon Theodore told councillors.
Meanwhile, a bid for a 43,000-square-foot commercial plaza from a Kinleigh Developments for the southwest corner of Modeland and Berger Road was withdrawn prior to the May 25 council meeting.