SUNDRE — Council recently unanimously approved amendments to both the municipal development plan as well as the Eagle Ridge area structure plan.
The move came by way of motion during the regular Sept. 20 meeting conducted by teleconference following a public hearing on the proposed changes.
The amendments to the municipal development plan pertained in large part to updated definitions as well as the rezoning of three parcels of land:
• One on the eastern-most side of town immediately north of Highway 27, to commercial and mixed use from public and institutional;
• Another at the location of the proposed four-season campground and passive outdoor use recreation area on the south side of Highway 27 behind Fountain Tire, to parks and open space from industrial;
• And on the west side of Centre Street North just past 12th Avenue to be identified as an area of special interest.
Mike Marko, the municipality’s director of planning and economic development, told council during the public hearing portion of the meeting that a Mountain View County landowner who has a property adjacent to the proposed site of the four-season campground had submitted concerns including potential trespassing onto his parcel.
Marko said, through intermittent interference that at times made properly hearing his presentation challenging, that trespassing is already not permitted, and that a buffer zone between the properties would be included in the final site design to prevent people from entering onto his property.
“There will be rules and regulations put into place to deal with excessive noise, campfire control, and together with provincial fire ban rules that would be applicable,” said Marko.
“So, there are tools available to deal with these matters and I believe through town management, we can avoid any possible conflict between the two land uses."
Outlining the proposed amendments to the Eagle Ridge Area Structure Plan amendment next, Marko said the changes were designed to provide more a flexible approach for development as well as regular housekeeping of updating the document.
“The primary uses in the plan will still remain as low to medium density,” said Marko. “However, other compatible uses to support community development can also be considered.”
Additionally, he said the amendments would pave the path forward for the potential to develop commercial and institutional uses that support community development.
Among the revisions outlined were:
• removal of future subdivision lots and internal roads with the exception of two existing phases;
• providing clearer articulation of features and general land use areas, including major open space and pathways/trails;
• identification of a possible direct control district to be used by council to address more flexibility and diversity with community uses;
• adding a servicing map showing major servicing network for the plan area, including storm pond and general overland drainage flow; and
• a revised phasing strategy.
“The future development of these lands will require developers to be responsible for financing and construction of services to town standards,” said Marko.
Betty Ann Fountain, senior development officer, said several letters had been received with regards to the Eagle Ridge area structure plan amendment.
While one was from the municipality’s engineers, who presented among other details the potential for population projections, another correspondence was submitted by the duly authorized agent of an adjacent landowner of a quarter section to the west as well as an adjoining subject property to the north that is eventually expected to become known as Mountain Springs.
The letter expressed concerns about infrastructure cross-connections between Mountain Springs and Eagle Ridge, namely but not exclusively with regards to a single, primary road connection between the two sites.
“While our communications with the Eagle Ridge representative have been and are anticipated to continue to be collaborative and conducted in the spirit of cooperation, we must speak against the application and ask that it be delayed until the transportation circulation and underground utilities are properly coordinated,” Fountain said, reading the letter to council.
Mike Marko said all servicing to be provided in the area will have to be delivered as per the municipality’s standards under the current utility master plan, which was prepared by the town’s engineers.
Additionally, he said the area structure plan is a preliminary draft document that has not yet been submitted to the town by way of an application.
“So, technically, there is no area structure plan in our hands that has been submitted and officially kick-starting a process for area structure plan review,” he said, adding area structure plans are typically prepared when landowners are ready to move forward with a development.
“I just want to emphasize: there is no application in our hands yet for this property, and we acknowledge that there is a desire for them to eventually come in with a formal application so we can commence a review process.”
Lastly, Marko said the plan is not proposing any amendment to the road collectivity issue with the lands to the west.
“There is flexibility to address the matter of the connectivity in the future,” he said. “Detailed servicing design and capacity issues will be addressed at subdivision stage with the mutual collaboration and discussion with all affected landowners and parties as we go forward.”
After resuming its regular meeting, council later proceeded to give both bylaw amendments second and third reading.