Neighbouring counties grill Stettler County on proposed development

RV Sites Canada withdrew its application for a 24-hour work permit at its proposed Paradise Shores RV Resort development. Summer Village of White Sands Coun. Bill Sanchuck, during a meeting March 1 in Stettler County, questioned the amount of site work RV Sites Canada was already doing before having their development approved. (Facebook photo)



Lacombe County took issue with the County of Stettler fast tracking the proposed Paradise Shores RV Resort development along Buffalo Lake and could delay the project.
Lacombe County, one of five member municipalities of the Buffalo Lake Intermunicipal Development Plan (IDP), called a meeting in Stettler with all the member municipalities on March 1.
Lacombe County Coun. Brenda Knight questioned the process.
“I’m sitting here struggling just a bit as Lacombe County we only got these documents two days ago. Two days ago. And now there’s a public hearing, not a public meeting. I’m still trying to wrap my mind around this.”
Coun. Knight said Lacombe County has 21 days to respond to the development application but wasn’t given that amount of time.
“If we have 21 days to respond to you then we should get (documents) 21 days ahead of time.
“I know you are trying to fast track this,” she said but added that Lacombe County should have been notified as soon as possible.
County of Stettler Director of Planning and Development Johan van der Bank said they were pleased to get the development and the developers had pre-sold leases at the Calgary RV show even before they put in their application.
Van der Bank said RV Sites Canada has also started preparing the land for development and the county would “not stop them doing what they are doing.”
In addition, he said the developers are getting studies, such as environmental and engineering, done parallel to each other to expedite the process.
“They have a window of opportunity they need to meet and (Stettler County) is not going to stand in their way.”
The Buffalo Lake IDP requires municipalities to give participating members 18 months to two years notice for any proposed development along Buffalo Lake.
Summer Village of White Sands Coun. Bill Sanchuck questioned the amount of site work RV Sites Canada was already doing.
Rick Halper of RV Sites Canada said to accommodate all of the required studies they had to remove the snow from the site.
Paradise RV Resort developer Dave Hamm said that they are doing everything in their power to resolve any arising issues.
“We want this to be a benefit for the community.”
Hamm said the entire project has three phases and is expected to be completed by mid June 2019.
There will almost 1,000 RV lots constructed in three phases. The proposed development application includes a retail store, clubhouse, restaurant, spa, bar, fitness area, marina, tiny cottages, outdoor recreation facilities including a swimming pool and tennis courts.
Van der Bank said the current Buffalo Lake IDP allows for this type of development.
If Lacombe County opposes the development it could delay the project because of the mandatory 60-day dispute process in the IDP.

Lisa Joy
ECA Review

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