County of Wetaskiwin council approved a rezoning for a former schoolyard following a public hearing during their Planning and Development council meeting Jan. 9.
A landowner had applied to rezone a parcel from Country Residential to Recreational.
Reeve Terry Van de Kraats opened the public hearing.
Director of Planning and Development David Blades presented the details in the agenda memo.
“On November 7, 2019, Administration received an application from Laura Graff to rezone approximately 7.29 acres (2.95 hectares) within Lot 6, Block 1, Plan 1623340, SE 31-44-22-W4M from Country Residential (CR) to Recreational (R),” stated the memo.
“If rezoning is approved, the Applicant intends apply for change of use for the existing structure to develop an event centre. The event centre would have the activities within the old Rosebrier School building.
“On November 14, 2019, referral letters were sent to West Central Planning Agency, the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER), Alberta Sustainable Resource Development (ASRD), Alberta Environment, Alberta Transportation, and Administration.”
Alberta Transportation had no concerns, and county staff noted, “Other than the possible concerns of noise being an issue for the two residential property directly to the south, no issues with potential rezoning; Concern with the compatibility of the residential houses to the south. It should be verified that some further consultation occurs with both property owners as sometimes weddings or other events can be a little on the loud side with music and outdoor festivities usually happing at campfires with trailers. I do not know if the County’s Noise Bylaw and potential response times by CPOs would be sufficient to manage any potential future concerns.”
Blades pointed out there are two residences on separate parcels to the south. He stated a letter was received from one of the property owners noting concerns about noise and access if the rezoning was approved.
Councilor Bill Krahn stated he couldn’t see how the event centre would be any noisier than a school had been.
The applicant, Graff, spoke next. She said she was considering a fence and row of trees to the south and plan to focus on the north access to keep traffic away from the residences.
If the event centre was approved, Graff said she was considering such activities as yoga retreats, conferences and scrap booking.
No other members of the public attended the hearing.
Van de Kraats said he could see where the community could benefit from a development like this.
Blades wrapped up by stating the site is suitable for the proposed zoning, the applicant has done a lot of work preparing for the project and county staff recommended approving the rezoning.
Van de Kraats closed the public hearing, and councilors unanimously approved the rezoning.