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Posted: March 12, 2019

City opposed to New Lake area subdivision

The City of Cranbrook will be informing the Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) that it does not support a proposed 53-rural lot subdivision in the New Lake Road area west of the city.

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Acting Mayor Mike Peabody last night (March 11) read the RDEK Bylaw Referral for Bylaws No. 2908 and 2909 (Cranbrook West Hill) for proposed amendments to the Rockyview Official Community Plan and Cranbrook Rural Zoning Bylaws in order to allow for future subdivision of part of a 193 ha property.

The subdivision would be for 53 one and two ha lots to be built out over eight to 10 years.

City administrative staff recommended council note to the RDEK that city OCP policy does not generally support development of a significant scale and impact adjacent to the city.

“Smaller scale subdivisions in the vicinity of the city are typically not a concern to city interests; however, city OCP policy states: “In general, development of a significant scale and impact are not supported adjacent to the city.” A proposal of this scale, with smaller parcel sizes does cause staff to consider the potential implications to the city particularly from a land fragmentation and future servicing perspective. With 53 lots between one and two hectares on wells and septic systems, there may potential for future pressures on the City of Cranbrook to provide services should those on-site systems ever fail. In addition, further development would be restricted based on the current proposed layout,” city planner Rob Veg outlined in a council report.

“This is a massive development that is being proposed outside of our boundaries and the interests of Cranbrook is not being served,” said Coun. Norma Blissett, adding, “We have housing development areas at Wildstone and out at Shadow Mountain and there is certainly lots available, so I’d rather see that full first, at least partially or half full before any other developments of that scale go ahead again.”

Noting that two Elk Valley municipalities last year (Elkford and Sparwood) opted out of the RDEK planning referral processes, Coun. Wes Graham said this subdivision proposal on the city’s boundary is exactly why municipalities should be part it.

“It just shows how important your voice can be in the planning process and the few dollars we spend to participate – this is where it pays off,” he said.

Sparwood has since returned to the RDEK planning process.

Coun. Ron Popoff agreed with city staff.

“We don’t need those kind of long-term issues – right on our property line,” he said.

Council was unanimous in support of the staff recommendation to note concerns.

Maps from RDEK March 8 meeting agenda

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