Six cell towers slated for national park

Council briefs from the Village of Radium Hot Springs February 13th council meeting

Parks Canada has received a proposal from Telus outlining plans to install six cell phone service towers throughout Kootenay National Park. “Construction will be a year and a half from now at the earliest,” explained Trevor Kinley, wildlife crossing project manager for Parks Canada, during the council meeting. “Telus has got a preliminary proposal in and Parks Canada will review that proposal and go through the environmental assessment process.” The completion of the towers will likely mean cell phone coverage throughout Kootenay National Park, Kinley said. “The intent is to get nearly continuous coverage throughout the entire park, but there are a few issues with canyons and trying to get around corners.” For more information, please contact Trevor Kinley at . Shikedanz phase approved Radium council approved phase one of a two phase affordable strata sub- division proposed by Shikedanz Properties in Elk Park. “We want to encourage new people to come to Radium and we think this development is what we need to do,” said Brent Berezowksi of Shikedanz. Construction of the first stage of the development has begun and will include 13 single family housing lots. The project raised concern when it was noted that the developer wished to exclude sidewalks from the sub-division because they would encroach on the natural surroundings and size of lots in the area. “The more trees we take down, the less desirable the lots are,” Mr. Berezowski told council. “We all know that the stacked townhouses and the higher density stuff has no place in the marketplace right now. We have tried to keep the units with as little impact as possible on the green space.” In a memo to council, Arne Dohlen, Radium’s director of planning and development services, raised concern that omitting sidewalks from the development could jeopardize the safety of children and oppose the community accessibility that Radium has worked to maintain. The proposed development of 13 sidewalk-less lots would not jeopardize pedestrians because the area would face minimal traffic and adjacent walking trails bordering the sub-division would be within 100 metres, Mr. Berezowski countered. Councillor Clara Reinhardt agreed with the Shikedanz representative. “The sidewalks, for me, are not really a big deal because I agree that it is a short distance to walk.” Another concern regarding the development was raised over the implementation of a ditch system running the length of the development, with culverts at each home. “Every spring, runoff is an issue, and where we have a curb and gutter system it has really mitigated that problem,” said Councillor Ron Verboom. “At the Revelstoke sub-division and Jackson avenue there is no curb and gutter, and every spring we have a big problem with runoff.” The cost-effective nature of the sub-division would be hindered by a curb and gutter requirement, Mr. Berezowski added. “I think we can find an engineering solution to the problem without having to go with curb and gutter,” he said. Ultimately, because the project is a bare-land strata with a private road it falls outside of the jurisdiction of Radium’s strictest sub-division standards, said Mark Read, Radium’s chief administrative officer. Despite the minor issue surrounding drainage, council unanimously approved the project. “It is nice to see another development permit like this come across our desk,” added Coun. Verboom.