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Recent monitoring report shows land use trends in Mountain View County

The number of acres redesignated in Mountain View County for all land uses in 2021 was 1,227 compared with 696.82 acres in 2022

MOUNTAIN VIEW COUNTY - Council has received the latest municipal development plan (MDP) monitoring report outlining redesignations, subdivision applications and other activities in the county in 2021 and 2022.

The report included statistics on economic development in the county, including that 20 new businesses received development permits in 2022, compared with 15 in 2021.

The MDP is an overarching document that governs development across the municipality. Prepared by administration, the annual monitoring report outlines activities related to the plan and how the plan has been utilized in the municipality over the past year.

The report presented to council at the recent regularly scheduled council meeting covers two reporting periods: from Jan. 1, 2021 to Dec. 31, 2021, and Jan. 1, 2022 to Dec. 31, 2022.

Margaretha Bloem, director of planning and development, reviewed the report with council.

The number of acres redesignated for all land uses in 2021 was 1,227 compared with 696.82 acres in 2022. The number of applications that were approved were 43 in both 2021 and 2022.

“Not all redesignation approvals resulted in additional parcels through the subdivision process,” she said. “Some applications are for boundary adjustments, one application proposed no subdivision, and some applications require the remainder to be redesigned at the same time.”

In 2021, 29 applications were approved in the agricultural preservation area, compared with 33 applications approved in 2022.

A total of 982.35 acres were redesignated to agricultural (2) zoning as a result of 18 applications in 2021, compared with 15 applications in 2022 representing 497.95 total acres.

Two applications were approved for 2021 for new agricultural parcels smaller than 40 acres, compared to five in 2022.

A total of 129.58 acres were redesignated to residential districts in 2021 from 23 application, compared with 104.7 acres from 24 applications in 2022.

Regarding low density residential subdivisions, two applications, each proposing two new residential parcels, were redesignated within the potential multi-residential development area in 2021, representing four additional parcels and a total of 12 acres.

Council did not consider any applications for two or more residential parcels in 2022.

The average size of agricultural parcels larger than 40 acres in 2022 (20.81 acres) was smaller than the average size in 2021 (27.65 acres).

Ten approvals for farmsteads in 2021 represented 83.58 acres compared with seven farmstead applications in 2022 that represented less land at 49.12 acres.

Regarding confined feeding operations, in 2021 a new dairy operation and an expansion of a chicken operations received approval, and in 2022 a conversion of a beef operation to a chicken operation received approval.

“It is noted that the (Natural Resources Conservation Board) approvals are not time limited in the same way development permits will expire if not completed in two years,” she said.

Regarding economic development, in 2021, 15 new businesses received development permits, of which seven were located on agricultural zoned lands, and three on country residential zoned lands. Three new businesses were approved on business and industrial zoned lands.

In 2022, 20 new businesses received development permits, of which four are located on agricultural zoned lands and eight on country residential zoned lands. Seven new businesses were approved on business and industrial zoned lands.

A total of seven businesses expanded in 2021 and none were located on a combination of agricultural, parks and recreation, and direct control zoned lands. 

In 2022, a total of 11 businesses expanded that were located on direct control zoned lands, a few on agricultural or business industrial zoned lands.

The report also included a summary of 2021 and 2022 decisions made by approving authorities, with a total of 378 made in 2021 and 364 in 2022.

“This a fantastic report. It is an extremely useful report. There is great information here,” said reeve Angela Aalbers.

The complete monitoring report, including updated maps, is available for viewing on the county’s website. 

Council received the report as information. All members of council attended the Feb. 14 council meeting, held in person and online.

Dan Singleton

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