Noise complaint fails

Opponents of a motocross track near Alix presented “no substantive evidence” of the amount of noise generated by the facility, says the Lacombe County board that heard an appeal of a development permit for Xtreme Raceways.

Opponents of a motocross track near Alix presented “no substantive evidence” of the amount of noise generated by the facility, says the Lacombe County board that heard an appeal of a development permit for Xtreme Raceways.

Also, conflicting accounts from area neighbours of how noisy the track is left the board “unable to determine the degree of impact noise from the track had on the appellants and other individuals opposed to the track,” says the written decision released late last week.

“Furthermore, the county does not have a noise bylaw in place to assist the board in determining what types of noise and noise levels are considered acceptable and unacceptable,” says the board.

The motocross track has become a lightning rod issue in a rural area of rolling hills just southwest of Alix. Frustrated neighbours have complained the weekend races ruin the countryside calm and participants heading to races create clouds of dust on local roads.

The track’s many supporters have praised owners Greg and Michelle Martens for creating a safe and family-friendly environment for motocross enthusiasts and say their business should be given a fair chance to succeed.

The issue came to a head in March when the Martens were required to reapply for a development permit after an existing approval expired. The track was first opened in 2002.

Lacombe County’s municipal planning commission approved a five-year development permit for the track that allowed the operators to add some Sundays of use in July and August in return for cutting back on other hours. A number of area residents appealed that decision.

The April 29 appeal hearing turned into a six-hour marathon and council chambers was packed with about 100 people on both sides of the issue.

Area resident John McClelland, who represents a group of nearly two dozen landowners, took a harder line than previously and called on the board to shut down the track. In the past, the landowner group had said they didn’t want to close the facility, but only wanted to reduce the weekend operating hours to reduce the noise.

The appeal board reversed the additional Sunday operating hours granted by the commission, but approved a five-year development permit that will allow the track to continue operating.

McClelland said on Monday that his group is waiting for legal advice before decided whether to make an application to the Alberta Court of Appeal. The board’s decision can only be appealed on a question of law or jurisdiction.

If an appeal court challenge is impractical, McClelland said they will consider a civil lawsuit on the grounds residents have a right to enjoy their property.

“You’re supposed to be allowed to live in your backyard without any interference,” he said.

Just Posted

Red Deer group looking to keep roads safe for cyclists

A Red Deer cycling group is concerned about road safety after multiple… Continue reading

Smoke and pets do not mix

Take care of your pets during the smoky weather

Former Red Deer lawyer sentenced

Charges included possession of stolen property

Man causes mischief with axe in Ponoka

Arson and attempted break and enter charges laid

WATCH: Raising money for kids at the Gord Bamford Charity Golf Classic

Former NHL players, Olympians, pro rodeo circuit members and musicians teed off… Continue reading

Oilpatch fears delays as U.S. judge orders further review of KXL pipeline route

CALGARY — Potential delays in the completion of the Keystone XL pipeline… Continue reading

‘Queen of Soul’ Aretha Franklin dies at 76

NEW YORK — Aretha Franklin, the undisputed “Queen of Soul” who sang… Continue reading

Arrests in Burnaby, B.C., as order against Kinder Morgan protest camp enforced

BURNABY, B.C. — The RCMP arrested protesters Thursday as officers enforced a… Continue reading

‘Hot and dirty work:’ Commander describes fighting massive Ontario wildfire

BRITT, Ont. — From a helicopter flying over a smouldering swath of… Continue reading

Calgary Fire Department logs record opioid overdose calls in July

CALGARY — The Calgary Fire Department says there were a record number… Continue reading

RCMP in Burnaby, B.C., say Kinder Morgan protest camp to be dismantled

BURNABY, B.C. — The RCMP arrested protesters when officers enforced a court… Continue reading

Study: Smokers better off quitting, even with weight gain

NEW YORK — If you quit smoking and gain weight, it may… Continue reading

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month