By Cole Parkinson
With progress continuing to move forward for the Vauxhall truck stop project, the Municipal District of Taber had a bylaw to pass in order to re-designate some of the land.
After passing the first reading of Bylaw No. 1944 Re-designate lands from Rural-Urban Fringe to Rural Highway Commercial during their meeting on Feb. 26, a public hearing was needed in order to pass second and third readings.
“This is a land use bylaw amendment to rezone about a 2.6-acre piece of land just east of Lot 3, Block 2, Plan 0211517 from Rural/Urban Fringe to Rural Highway Commercial. The pieces it is adjacent to are already zoned highway commercial. This is to facilitate future subdivision and development of the truck stop,” explained Bonnie Brunner, senior planner for Oldman River Regional Services Commission at the M.D.’s regular meeting on March 26.
The proposed development would include approximately 6.96 acres of paved parking lot with washroom facilities and an area for heavy trucks to pull off the highway for a rest period improving the safety of the travelling public.
A total estimated cost of $2 million is projected for the entire project with Alberta Transportation indicating they will put the first $1.5 million into the project with the M.D providing the remaining amount.
A Memorandum of Agreement and Lease Agreement has been put in place as per previous discussions with Alberta Transportation for the Truck Stop Rest Area project and will be brought back to council for consideration.
In regard to the bylaw, with the public hearing and three-week notice for the bylaw, no complaints or concerns were brought forward.
“There doesn’t appear to be any planning issues or concerns in respect to the proposal,” added Brunner.
The only minor issue the land location brought was the area is within a current leased area of the local trap shooting club.
The M.D. has discussed the proposal with the club and an amended lease agreement was brought forward to the club.
“(It is) forty metres of their existing lease and I had them sign off on a letter saying they had no objection to it,” said Brian Peers, director of municipal lands and leases. “They did ask for some additional land to the north. Actually, the lease is slightly larger than it was before.”
Council voted unanimously to pass both second and third readings of the bylaw.