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County approves LUB amendment for potential hydrovac slurry facility in split vote

Posted on January 21, 2020 by Sunny South News

By Nikki Jamieson
Sunny South News

Lethbridge County has approved a land use bylaw that would allow for the construction of a hydrovac slurry facility northwest of Nobleford.

During their regular Jan. 15 meeting, Lethbridge County council held a public hearing for Bylaw 19-045 — an Amendment to the Land Use Bylaw to rezone the parcel from Rural Urban Fringe (RUF) To: Rural General Industrial (RGI).

The application for rezoning had been made by L.A. Power Systems Ltd., in order to allow for them to put a hydrovac slurry processing facility on the site. Due to the site’s proximity to the county’s transfer station and the Town of Nobleford’s lagoon system, the site can’t be used for residential purposes.

Hilary Janzen, senior planner for the county, said that the rezoning would allow for future industrial uses.

“The parcel would have to be rezoned for this particular use because it would be considered an industrial use, and there are regulations under Alberta Environment, strict regulations under Alberta Environment, for this particular use,” said Janzen.

The county hasn’t received any concerns regarding the proposed land use amendment. The county’s Technical Services and Public Operations departments had reviewed the application and the proposed intended use, and have no concerns with the amount of traffic that the business would generate in the area or the proximity to Stud Horse Lake, and if required, conditions can be put on a development permit to address the impact of future businesses on the road, access, drainage and storm-water management. While the Town of Nobleford had some initial concerns, they removed any opposition following a discussion with the applicant at their Nov. 19, 2019 council meeting.

No one spoke in favour or against the bylaw during the public hearing.

After the public hearing closed, coun. Steve Campbell raised concern over the location of the facility off a gravel road, and not a highway, and the potential deterioration of the road from increased traffic.

“I know this isn’t an industrial park but it is an industrial use. But typically, we wouldn’t put an industrial park a mile off of a highway, we would want them on a highway just for that truck-road use,” said Campbell. “I don’t really see this as being different. I mean, stuff like this, we should try to encourage it not to be on our gravel roads. If we can put things close to a highway, that’s an ideal location for these. The road isn’t normally in good shape when there is a lot truck use, and I’m just concerned that it is going to get in bad shape again. I know half a dozen trucks a week don’t amount to much, but it is still extra wear-and-tear on our roads.”

Council passed second and third reading of Bylaw 19-045, with a split 5-2 vote for each reading. Coun. Ken Benson and Campbell voted against each reading.

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