Foothills land preserved

City initiates zoning boundary adjument in Foothills

Additional parkland is being preserved in the Foothills.

The City of Vernon, working in conjunction with Foothills Development Ltd., has initiated a zoning boundary adjustment in the Foothills neighbourhood for areas near Blackcomb Way, Baldy Place and the water reservoir site on Foothills Drive. Zoning boundaries are proposed to be adjusted to refine future parkland areas and residential development areas. The proposal includes creating an increased amount of parkland in more desirable locations, including protection of a significant view point along Foothills Drive.

The large open space ravine between Foothills Drive, Silver Star Road and Blackcomb Way is to be dedicated to the City as parkland as part of a subdivision process, much like other ravine areas in the neighbourhood. Some small areas had been zoned for residential development that are now intended to form part of a park ravine area, and other areas that had been zoned for park are now intended for residential development. Foothills Development Ltd. is working with the City to protect a significant view corridor along Foothills Drive south of the water reservoir which would form part of the future ravine park lot.

“The ravines in the Foothills Neighbourhood play an important role in the overall drainage system for the area, provide habitat protection and wildlife corridors and are intended to provide a connected community trail system with links to the Grey Canal,” said Cleo Corbett, long range planner.

Four lots along Baldy Place are currently zoned, partially or entirely, for parks and open space. The proposed zoning adjustment will rezone these lots for hillside residential single- and two-family homes. There are currently plans for construction of single family homes on Baldy Place. Council passed a policy resolution on Aug. 14 stating that the City will not be enforcing the zoning or building bylaws on park zoned lots while the rezoning adjustment is being considered, allowing land owners to start construction, at their own risk, without a building permit.

The zoning amendment process is estimated to take approximately four weeks.

It does not include the sensitive habitat which is the subject of a petition to save Western screech owls, as recently featured in The Morning Star.