We’re Back And So Is TSMV

by | Jul 21, 2021 | TSMV

We are still overjoyed from yesterday’s 6-1 vote by Town Council to reject TSMV’s Village Centre ASP. Thank you once again for engaging and playing a vital role in yesterday’s outcome. We feel so proud and happy to be part of this amazing community!

So while yesterday we celebrated, today it’s back to reality. In the afterglow of seeing TSMV’s audacious proposals rejected, what happens next?

It’s no surprise that TSMV intends to appeal Council’s decision to the Municipal Government Board. Although, it’s difficult to imagine how Council could be found at fault for voting to uphold an Urban Growth Boundary and Private Recreation zoning that’s clearly delineated in our Municipal Development Plan.

Regardless of how the appeal unfolds, you can bet TSMV will be back with another suite of proposals for the same lands in the future. So how do we turn yesterday’s temporary win into a victory that lasts forever? How do we avoid having to live through the turmoil of the last 6 months all over again?

As many of you have indicated, a community-led purchase of the unfinished golf course would be a good start. Such a purchase could enable us to turn the southern (and most heavily undermined) portion of the unfinished golf course into a conservation reserve that gets added to the too-narrow wildlife corridor. And the northern section could become a Town-controlled development consisting solely of affordable housing.

Sound like a pipe dream? We don’t think so. The pathway and partnerships to achieve such a vision are being researched right now. We plan to use the momentum that got us to our temporary goal to work towards a permanent solution for the wildlife corridor and prevent any development on the most heavily undermined lands.

We will be back in touch soon with more info on how YOU can be involved.

Have a great night!We hope that you’re enjoying summer in the mountains!

After Town Council rejected TSMV’s Village Centre ASP on May 25th, we needed a break to refresh, reflect, and enjoy the outdoors.

But now our time of peace and tranquility has been disrupted. On June 17th, TSMV filed a judicial review on the rejected Smith Creek Area Structure Plan. And, just last 6 days ago, TSMV filed a formal appeal to overturn our Town Council’s decision and have the Smith Creek Area Structure Plan approved by the newly formed Land and Property Rights Tribunal.

We are disappointed but not surprised given this developer’s history of litigation, and, despite what their PR says, not listening to community concerns. We are not legal experts, but we are struggling to see how their complaints, largely centered around the 1992 NRCB decision to allow certain development on these lands, will hold any water.

First, a third of their recently defeated Smith Creek proposal (and a big reason why it was rejected) called for extensive residential development on the Thunderstone lands, which fall outside Canmore’s Municipal Growth Boundary and beyond the geographic scope of the 1992 NRCB decision (in fact these lands were zoned for wildlife conservation in response to the 1992 NRCB decision).

Second, the vision for the area the NRCB did approve for development was for a mixed resort and residential project with 50 percent of residences “being relatively low-cost apartments, condominiums, multi-family and single-family units on lots less than 50 feet in width.” The rejected Smith Creek proposal had no resort component and did not reflect the NRCB vision for residential development. Had it been approved, we would have ended up with more high-end, unaffordable, and predominantly empty second homes that, although lucrative for TSMV, are not what our community (or burning world) needs.

Third, for TSMV to suggest the Town should not take wildlife movement or undermining risk into account is like telling a parent not to worry about their child’s education because it is all a provincial government responsibility.  Human-wildlife coexistence is a municipal safety and sustainability issue our Town grapples with every day, and, as the current remediation work that has reduced traffic to a single lane on the road to Quarry Lake shows us, old mining shafts do slump and fail beneath our roads and pathways, requiring costly, taxpayer-funded mitigation.

We will monitor these developments closely and keep you updated as the legal process unfolds.

In the meantime, BVE will also start to focus attention on the upcoming October 18th municipal election, and will continue working to establish (and then fundraise for) a local conservation fund for the community purchase of lands with high conservation and/or affordable housing value.

Have a great day and we’ll be back in touch in the coming weeks!

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