Rocky View County council approved an application to redesignate 52.5 acres of agricultural lands to accommodate a future 20-lot subdivision in the Bearspaw area, June 21.
The land, located immediately east of Bearspaw Road and 1.5 miles north of Burma Road, is very hilly and has a natural drainage nearby.
Council felt concerns related to the topography, including drainage, winter accessibility and density, could be dealt with at the subdivision stage.
“I am confident this land can support R1 (designation) depending on the lot size,” said Greg Boehlke, Division 6 councillor. “Subdivision will deal with all the technical studies.”
The development will feature lots ranging in size from two to 3.26 acres and a natural zone, provided by Environmental Reserve Easements and restrictive covenants, will buffer the development from the existing four-acre lots to the south.
Water will be provided by the Rocky View Water Co-op. Wastewater will be provided by advanced septic systems on each proposed lot.
The subject lands are divided by topography. About 21 acres on the western portion are flatter and more developable. The eastern parcel is steeper and constrained by a large hill.
Technical tests at subdivision stage will help determine the final configuration and number of lots in the development. Each lot must contain at least one acre of developable land.
Because of the hilly nature of the lands, slope stability is a concern, one that is shared by a number of residents. In fact, the County received 15 letters of opposition and one letter of support.
“No one is really opposed to the subdivision, but it doesn’t seem it will be able to handle two-acre parcels,” said Elaine Rude, who neighbours the land and spoke on behalf of a group of concerned residents. “From our perspective, it shouldn’t be done. That land has a very steep slope and is unsuitable for development.”
Rude says vehicles often have trouble navigating the hills in the winter and that the area will always have drainage issues.