Council looks at Wildstone’s future

City staff and consultants looking to update the neighbourhood plan around Wildstone.

City council is looking at amending the current neighbourhood plan for the future development of the Wildstone area.

City council is looking at amending the current neighbourhood plan for the future development of the Wildstone area.

First and second readings were given to amend Cranbrook’s Official Community Plan to update a neighbourhood plan in the Wildstone area at Monday night’s city council meeting.

The proposed neighbourhood plan will result in a project that isn’t encumbered by existing phasing requirements that were put in place before the real estate downturn in 2008.

Elements of the existing plan have also been modified to reflect the current vision for the project, which is to reduce the commercial component and complete removal of a second planned golf course.

Eric Sharpe, Director of Engineering and Development, gave an update to council on the plan during the meeting, noting that Wildstone is being broken up into two neighbourhood areas—the area immediately surrounding the golf course, with the other area being parcels of land adjacent to Moir Park which is known as the ‘Highlands’.

“A number of years ago, the development had started under one ownership group and the current OCP had a phasing established for the development—phases 1-11—and there was a requirement that a certain percentage of dwelling units would have to be developed before you could move to the next phase,” said Sharpe. “Currently, that just isn’t feasible anymore now that the lands kind of broken up and there’s multiple owners.”

The project is being split up into four major blocks for development—Block A, B, C, and D.

Block A consist of development completed prior to Dec. 31, 2014 at the golf course. Block B includes development pods within the golf course that is currently serviced with water and sewer.

Block C includes land immediately north of the golf course, while Block D includes lands adjacent to Highway 95A and Echo Field Road.

Development of each block will proceed on the progress of preceding blocks. For example, Development of Block C will only proceed once there is substantial development of Block B.

Sharpe elaborated on divvying up the area into the two Wildstone and Highland neighbourhoods.

“With a change in the vision of removing that second golf course, that significantly changed the whole vision of the development,” said Sharpe. “Now we have some policy direction and guidance for the Highlands area, it’s going to be treated separately from the Wildstone core, which now consists of the golf course and the residential development pods.”

Inside the blocks are development pods, which have a specific minimum and maximum dwelling unit density attributed to ensure a certain level of development will occur on each given pod.

“The one pod we’re particularly looking forward to moving with, it’s now designated single family cluster, so it will actually allow the developers to throw in a mix of housing, whether as before it was pretty much going to be single family, now they’re looking at different forms of housing,” said Sharpe. “It’ll bring some unique density to the area and unique forms of housing.”

The proposed OCP amendment will be referred to the Advisory Planning Commission and proceed to a public hearing for Feb. 1, 2016.