Land use changes approved for undeveloped Dawson’s Landing area

The changes are described as minor.

Chestermere City Council passed the second and third reading of minor land use amendments in Dawson’s Landing during the July 19 meeting.

The applicant Stantec, on behalf of the landowner Qualico, applied for the change which incorporates a planned block of narrower single-detached homes replaced with semi-detached or townhome units.

The site is south of Merganser Drive West and west of Rainbow Road.

The Municipal Development Plan (MDP), the Waterbridge Master Area Structure Plan, the Gateway Area Structure Plan, Dawson’s Landing Outline Plan, and the Land Use Bylaw were previously approved.

“We’re requesting an amendment to the Land Use Bylaw Senior Planner of Growth and Development Jordan Furness said. “The changes are minor enough that it doesn’t trigger changes to any of the other policies.”

The changes will benefit the landowner to realize design goals and product mix for the developing Dawson’s Landing neighbourhood, the council report said.

Adding, the changes would maintain efficient use of planned investments in streets, underground services and amenity areas while meeting the minimum density requirements.

“The relative change in total units across the Dawson Landing area is deemed minor, with no notable changes to the streets, infrastructure or amenities planned for the area,” Furness said.

The change would provide the applicant with development flexibility.

No disadvantages of the changes were identified as the surrounding land has not been developed yet.

City administration doesn’t anticipate there will be a significant increase in traffic in the area or student population in schools.

“Responding to market interest for the area, this is a good time to be doing it, because nobody is living anywhere remotely close to this,” Furness said. “Anybody looking to buy in this area is going to have a clear head’s up with what’s going on, this is an undeveloped area so people should be eyes wide coming into it.”

The applicant explained that the request to change the land use was inspired by wanting to provide diversity and a mix of products in Chestermere.

“In the early phases, we’ve had a high proportion of single detached homes and where the market is going and what we’re looking to provide with this phase is a better range and diversity of townhouse product,” the applicant said.

“The underlying concern in the community is we start off with a plan, then we keep increasing the density,” City Councillor Stephen Hanley said. “People in this community are concerned with increasing density, coming up with a plan, and the developers coming back trying to add more houses.”

Hanley added it would be beneficial in future presentations for city administration to provide council with a running tab of density numbers in the area.

“There are no black and white consequences. It speaks to what’s a responsible number of people that there’s an effective return on the services provided in the area, and a responsible amount of commercial in the area,” Furness said. “If you end up with fewer people, you have slightly less efficient infrastructure because it was planned at a slightly high number.”

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