A development proposed for Aberdeen and headed to a public hearing on Tuesday night is linked to old plans for Edinburgh Heights, a vision for a Scottish-style village in the area that dates back more than a decade.
City of Kamloops planning and development supervisor Eric Beach provided KTW with the history. He said the land is held by a private developer, who held a vision for the area of a Scottish village, complete with single- and multi-family homes, a commercial centre and cobblestone streets.
Kamloops This Week stories from 2008 to 2011 frefer to landowner Dave Taylor, who s till owns the land at the heart of this week’s public hearing. KTW left messages with Taylor, but as of Monday afternoon, had not received a return call.
The Scottish village proposal for the top of Aberdeen was introduced in 2008. However, as development proceeded, the overall idea changed.
“The market outlook, it was more on the push for single-family homes into that area and that meets the current policies of our KamPlan,” Beach said. “He’s come in with a proposal now to tweak that Aberdeen plan, which is just on his lands.”
Tuesday’s public hearing will ask council to approve rezoning at 2800 Bentall Dr. from agricultural to residential to pave way for 22 new single-family lots. Beach explained the developer has proposed moving that village concept from the east end of Bentall Drive west to the intersection of Pacific Way and Abbeyglen Way, where the two arterials converge.
It is unknown at which time that would ever be developed and it is not part of a rezoning at this time. Beach said the area requires servicing, which is dependent on when funding would be available for such a project through the city’s development cost charges, which are fees levied on developers for growth projects in the city.
“It was just a star on a map before. It had the ‘commercial node is going to be developed here,’” Beach explained. “They said, ‘Well, that doesn’t make sense. We want to move it over here, where there is more chance for it to be successful because you get all the other Aberdeen areas going to that commercial node, where you wouldn’t have to drive all the way to the end of Bentall to get to it.’”
Other changes to the Aberdeen plan include space for a future school, changing the boundaries for open space and identifying space for a neighbourhood park. In 2008, when the plan was created, schools were closing due ti declining enrolment. Now, there is demand, Beach said.
A parks master plan was subsequently created after the Aberdeen plan, identifying need for park space in the area, not simply open space, Beach said.
“That’s the other change that’s going into this one, is adding a formalized park location,” he said.
The city has identified the southwest sector as the largest area for growth in the city.