An RV park and golf course project proposed near Eckville remains on track.
On Thursday, Lacombe County council approved a second reading of a rezoning bylaw for Alberta Views RV and Golf Resort, which will be built at the site of the former Last Hill Golf Course, which closed down in 2009.
Bill and Carla MacLean have since bought the property just northwest of Eckville and plan to create a 100-site RV park along with a playground, small pool, pickleball courts and a trail leading to a water feature.
Once the RV park is up and running, work will get underway on a nine-hole golf course with driving range.
Third and final reading of a bylaw to rezone 153 acres of agricultural land to recreational use is set for April 28, said Bill MacLean on Friday.
By then, the MacLeans expect to have the details of a development agreement ironed out with the county so it can go to council for approval.
MacLean said if all goes well with the weather and the availability of contractors, he hopes to start construction on the RV sites next month with the first tenants moving in later this summer. Marketing of sites has already begun and pre-sales have been encouraging.
“We’ve been pretty successful so far,” he said.
The game plan is to build the RV park first and then he will turn his attention to restoring the dormant golf course to playable condition as early as the summer of 2023 if all of the pieces fall into place.
“The focus is on the RV park,” he said. “The nine-hole golf course acts as an amenity to the RV park so that has to be our focus right now.
“There’s no point in rehabbing the golf course until we get the RV park off the ground.”
One of the biggest immediate challenges is getting the necessary building supplies on time.
“Like every other construction company out there we are facing all these supply chain issues,” he said.
While an RV park is not a complex project it requires water and sewer lines and electrical hook-ups and the amenities require concrete and other construction materials. While many construction materials are tricky to find, contractors are having an especially tough time getting their hands on copper wiring.
“That’s why there is such a huge rash of thefts and that kind of thing now because the value has gone way up and it’s just really difficult to get. Even the large contractors are having difficulty with that, and certainly the smaller ones.”
Supply chain issues, especially around irrigation system components, will also have a bearing on the golf course construction schedule.
“It’s a struggle, for sure. Things that used to take weeks, now take months. It’s as simple as that.”
Despite the challenges, MacLean is pleased with how the project, which is using many local contractors, is progressing.