March 30, 2019 6:25 pm
Updated: April 1, 2019 8:50 am

Referendum coming up on Pointe-Claire community centre development

WATCH: Vote ahead of referendum to decide on Pointe-Claire Coptic church's fate

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St. Peter and St. Paul Coptic Orthodox Church is at the centre of a referendum to determine whether it can build a community centre on the site of an abandoned elementary school.

With pre-voting starting Sunday, some residents along the boulevard told Global News the proposed project is out of keeping with its environs.

“Our main concern with this project is the church hall that can be rented out with city approval,” Anna Merulla told Global News. Merulla is one of the nearby residents on the “no” side of the referendum — she wants the school site to turn into residential housing.

WATCH: Future of Pointe-Claire’s Walton Avenue still up in the air (July, 2018)

“We hope to stop this project and keep the zoning residential,” she wrote in a follow-up text message.

The church, meanwhile, denies the community centre will serve those functions.

“We’re not conducting any commercial activity whatsoever,” said Shahir Guindi, a congregation member. “We’re not renting the space for any banquets, any weddings.”

READ MORE: Coptic church expansion plans divide Pointe-Claire neighbourhood

There are 161 people eligible to vote in the referendum. The date of the referendum is scheduled for April 7.

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