City council begins clearing hurdles to francophone school

Red Deer city council is paving the way for land-use changes in the Kin Canyon recreational area so a larger francophone school can be built there.

Red Deer city council is paving the way for land-use changes in the Kin Canyon recreational area so a larger francophone school can be built there.

On Monday, leaders gave first reading towards amending a land-use bylaw so that a new Direct Control district can be created in the area where the existing École La Prairie school is found, at 4810 35th St.

This district would cover the school and city-owned parcels, allowing for the development of the pre-kindergarten to Grade 12 school and the changes to the Kin Canyon Concept Plan. A public hearing will be held on April 16 at 6 p.m. in council chambers before council gives consideration to final readings.

Council also authorized up to $20,000 from the Capital Project Reserve to relocate a pond hockey rink to a temporary location in 2014 within the Kin Canyon area.

By creating such a district, the school would be allowed to have portables, said city planning manager Tara Lodewyk.

Planning staff also say the new Direct Control district would give residents assurance that park land within the area would be preserved, plus it accommodates a future community centre.

The city will maintain ownership of the parcel of land and there will be no loss of parkland or trails. The two rinks will run north-south as opposed to one running east-west. The community shelter will be revisited in 2020-2021 for potential replacement. The playground will move closer south to the school and the Kinsmen shelter will remain at its current location.

A total of 123 students attend the school, including 17 students in Grade 9.

Greater North Francophone Education Region anticipates it will take at least 10 years to reach the desired 300 students.

It’s preferred site along Addington Drive in Aspen Ridge was rejected by council on March 19 because of land-use concerns and widespread opposition.

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