(Advocate file photo).

Red Deer city council says ‘no’ to acreage amid industry

Land-use fragmentation, industrial emergencies are concerns

A picturesque property near Cameo Lake is unsuited for country residential use because it’s surrounded by industry, Red Deer city council determined.

The property north of Hwy 11 and west of Red Deer is within Red Deer County’s Burnt Lake Area Structure Plan. While the land is now zoned for light industrial/commercial uses, the property owner is asking Red Deer County to switch it to country residential.

The matter came before Red Deer city council on Monday because the lot is also located within the Intermunicipal Development Plan — which means that both the city and the county have to agree on any land use amendment for it to pass.

Red Deer city councillors heard that Red Deer County was amenable to the change. But city planners recommended that city council object on grounds that a country residential use is not compatible with existing and future industrial uses in the area.

City senior planner Orlando Toews cited many concerns, including land-use fragmentation. He said in case of industrial emergencies, firefighters may put themselves at greater risk if there‘s a residence in the area and citizens need to be evacuated.

City Manager Craig Curtis noted there are no amenities nearby to support a residence, such as schools or grocery stores.

While a few city councillors were initially considering approval, the concerns they heard swayed them to unanimously object to the land use amendment.

”We need to prevent development conflicts from occurring,” said Coun. Vesna Higham, who added the city‘s industrial areas are expected to grow in that direction.

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