Property owners at Whitetail Lake are working to overcome legal obstacles that currently restrict construction.
Through the Whitetail Lake Land Corporation (WLLC), 25 investors are hoping to divvy up a lot situated along the east side of Whitetail Lake, which is located about 28 kilometres west of Canal Flats. In consultation with the Ministry of Lands, Forests, and Natural Resources, the group of owners is in the process of splitting the property to create a 25-lot subdivision.
The property is owned by the whole group, but the parcel currently holds single-title status. In 2010, the WLLC was unsuccessful after submitting an application for rezoning to the Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) board of directors.
“The [RDEK] board of directors did not support that rezoning application, so the owners group are taking the other avenue, which is currently available to them,” said Karen MacLeod, acting planning and development services manager at the RDEK.
As reported in the April 1st, 2011 issue of The Pioneer, WLLC had also applied to rezone the property through the Ministry of Forests in 2011. A spokesperson from the ministry could not be reached for comment before press deadline, but that application was presumably denied as that approach is being attempted once again.
“The property owners group is currently going through a subdivision application process with the Ministry of Forests, Lands, and Natural Resource,” Ms. MacLeod said.
After the application is reviewed, the decision to approve or not is then made by the Provincial Approving Officer, Leslie Elder, said Ms. MacLeod.
“She works with district development approval technicians who review the applications with respect to the appropriate conditions and requirements under the highway act, transportation act, and other relevant information.”
As the WLLC continues its efforts to bring the subdivision to fruition, the project has been garnering opposition.
“This lake is very delicate environmentally due to the weed beds for fisheries and the travel corridors for wildlife and simply a beautiful mountain lake,” said recreational fisher Garth Sobey from Calgary. “I have held onto my faith that the political process would stop this development and thought it had.”
If approved, the subdivision will offer residents well water but no electricity.
Eric Redeker, owner of First Choice Realty, anticipates the application will be approved by the end of spring 2015. Through his firm, 1-22nd ownership of the property is for sale, which will become suitable to build on if the application is approved.
The Echo could not reach the Provincial Approving Officer for comment as of Monday’s press time.