Jimsmith development moving ahead

A controversial development at Jimsmith Lake has taken another step through the Regional District of East Kootenay board of directors.

A controversial development at Jimsmith Lake has taken another step through the Regional District of East Kootenay board of directors.

An 11-lot subdivision at the southeastern edge of the lake was given two readings by the board on Friday, October 4. A public hearing will be held later this month before the board agrees the subdivision can proceed.

Originally proposed last year, the development faced significant opposition from the Jimsmith community due to its one-hectare lots.

But the developer withdraw that application and came back to the regional district with a new plan for 11 two-hectare (five-acre) lots on the 25-hectare property.

“I heard lots from the community the first time; I’ve heard nothing from the community this time. I know the word’s out there because I put the word out there,” said Chair Rob Gay. “I don’t think it’s the end of the world with five-acre lots. I think they’ll be developed properly.”

“It’s in keeping with our land use plans and they’ve met the requirements we asked for.”

The property doesn’t connect with the lake shore and is separated by a strip of Crown land. A one-acre corner of the property will stay as a park, and the developer intends to register a covenant that will not allow building, tree removal or earth moving on that piece of land.

The 11 lots will have individual wells and septic systems. On each lot, buildings must be kept to a one-acre envelope, retaining four acres in its natural state.

For each lot that is sold, the developer will give $900 to the regional district for roads and community infrastructure such as pathways.

However, Cranbrook Mayor Wayne Stetski voted against the development, joined by Canal Flats Mayor Ute Juras and Sparwood Mayor Lois Halko.

“Cranbrook city council considered this and voted no. The reason for that was a cumulative impact concern for Jimsmith Lake as a whole,” said Stetski.

A public hearing on the Daprocida development will be held on Thursday, October 24 at 7 p.m. at the Regional District of East Kootenay’s Cranbrook office.