City council will start looking at where strip clubs will be allowed to open up in Saskatoon.

A recommendation going to council's meetijng Monday night would allow the clubs to open using the same zoning rules that dictate where nightclubs can operate. It’s a recommendation that isn’t sitting well with some people.

“The people who are leaving strip clubs, are they going to be bringing lewd behavior into our neighbourhoods?” said Jenn Simon, president of the Sutherland and Forest Grove Community Association.

Provincial laws are changing so that as of January, strip clubs will be allowed to open in Saskatchewan. City administration is recommending they be allowed to operate wherever nightclubs are.

“They have the same effects on the street, the same parking requirements, same building and location requirements. So from a land use point of view, there is not much difference between the two,” said Alan Wallace, manager of planning and development.

“So what we’re doing is regulating strip clubs in much the same way we regulate nightclubs.”

Some residents are questioning whether the strip clubs will have the same effect on the street as nightclubs.

“What happens when those patrons leave? Are they going to be more rowdy than bar-goers? Are they going to cause more problems in the area? It’s not what goes on in the bar that I would be concerned about as a resident, it’s what happens when they leave,” Simon said.

Edmonton and Lloydminster only allow strip clubs to open in industrial areas. Simon thinks this is the direction Saskatoon should take.

“I think that would need a lot of consultation from residents and the community association itself. Plus, city council. But in the grand scheme of things, I think it would probably be better off than to have it right next to somebody’s house,” Simon said.

The current recommendation includes the stipulation that strip clubs be at least 160 metres from parks, schools, and recreation facilities. Sutherland’s councilor Darren Hill thinks the city should add that another stipulation. He wants them 160 metres from residences as well.

“I’ll be recommending or moving a motion that we have the same separation distance as well so that would mean they could only be located in light or heavy industrial areas,” Hill said.

The issue will be discussed on Monday at city council.