West Fernie OCP Amendment and Rezoning Project
As of the 18th of December 2017, both phases 1 and 2 of West Fernie have been incorporated into the City of Fernie. The project has been underway for several years and the RDEK is still completing the new infrastructure project. As part of the inclusion of West Fernie in the City, we recognize the need to update our Official Community Plan and our Zoning Bylaw.
In 2017, we undertook a community survey and held a citizen workshop to gauge community desires and to help develop an OCP amendment and new Zoning that reflects community needs and the desires of residents. To assist with the project an advisory committee was appointed by Council that is largely made up of West Fernie residents.
Where are we now?
We have taken the information collected from the community through the survey and workshop and developed draft OCP and zoning amendments that reflect that feedback. Complete copies of these drafts are available for download. We will also be presenting specific topics for further discussion using the City’s facebook page. We encourage you to share your thoughts through the City’s facebook page. We want to know if the proposed changes reflect your views.
West Fernie in Focus:
Why use Facebook?
The intent is to ensure that all discussions and comments on the draft are public and that the conversation is visible to all. To this end, any letters that the city receives will be posted on the website, with names and contact information removed, to ensure this transparency.
OCP Amendment Overview
The proposed OCP amendments cover many topics. The City’s current OCP and several our other planning documents including the Leisure Services Master Plan and the Trails Master Plan contemplated improvements in and through the West Fernie area. It was illuminating to learn from citizen feedback that these documents were largely reflective of current community expectations in West Fernie.
The West Fernie OCP amendment includes, among other things, a new neighbourhood description, revised maps and development permit areas, and policies regarding trail development, Thomson Park planning and management, and urban agricultural pursuits. The amendment combines the feedback received through the survey and workshop with existing OCP policy developed through the extensive participation of City residents in 2014.
The feedback we received from the community was to maintain the majority of West Fernie as Residential with some commercial, parks and other zones. Amendments to the definitions section and general regulations will also been necessary. The new zones are:
- R-WF – Low Density Residential-West Fernie
- R-WF1 – Low Density Residential – West Fernie Steep Slope
- C-WF – West Fernie Mixed Use Zone
- A-1 – Agricultural Zone
Changes have also been proposed to the general regulations to allow for a new use specific to west fernie called urban agricultural animal keeping which would allow for the keeping off chickens and bees.