The County of Wetaskiwin turned down a re-zoning that involved a small portion of public property following a public hearing Sept. 17.
The application came from Frank & Merle Dyck for their parcel located at Lot P, Plan 3843KS, SE 13-46-1-W5M, which is located on the shores of Pigeon Lake. Dyck had previously appeared before council to explain he wished to purchase part of the municipal reserve land next to his parcel which would allow him to build a new home on said parcel.
Reeve Terry Van de Kraats opened the public hearing, with Director of Planning and Development David Blades explaining the application.
“On March 1, 2019, Administration received a request from Frank Dyck for a delegation to propose purchasing a portion of Municipal Reserve (MR) legally described as Lot P, Plan 3843KS, adjacent to his lot located within SE 13-46-1-W5M, Lot 28, Block 2, Plan 1523MC,” stated Blades in his memo to council.
“The purpose of the purchase and consolidation would be to rectify the encroachment of a fence, small boat shed, and drainage onto the Municipal Reserve. Additionally, the Applicant is proposing to construct a new residence, but the existing parcel is not large enough for the proposed house plan.
“On March 14, 2019, Council directed Administration to proceed with the re-designation and sale of the relevant portion of the affected Municipal Reserve lands with the landowner being responsible for one hundred percent (100%) of all associated costs.”
Blades noted the application was publicly advertised and neighbours were notified. The Louis Bull Tribe responded with concerns and observations, including those surrounding wildlife.
Several letters were received and there were no objections to the proposal.
It was stated that the MR parcel has a drainage ditch running through it, a county driveway, some access to a day-use area but no boat launch.
Dyck spoke next, noting that the drainage ditch was outside the area of his request and would remain county property. He stated he bought this parcel in 1992, and the shed was already there encroaching on county property. He placed it on skids so it could be moved easily.
A few neighbors spoke and voiced concerns, such as a new house so big it blocked views of the lake.
Van de Kraats closed the public hearing.
Councilor Josh Bishop noted he had concerns about the application, including the Dyck’s parcel was non-conforming, the drainage ditch and that a bigger house could affect sight lines.
Councilor Bill Krahn noted the house could be built so as to have no effect on sight lines.
Dyck noted the home he had in mind was about 1,500 to 1,700 square feet, not a huge footprint.
Councilor Lyle Seely noted that approving this application would set a precedent for private development on public property. “I’m having trouble with this one,” said Seely.
First Reading of the re-zoning was defeated by a 2 to 5 vote.
Afterwards, though, it was noted that council initially gave the nod for this application to proceed; they unanimously agreed that any fees Dyck might have paid for this application should be waived.