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RFD- 3764 Bylaws   Item #   9. a.    
Regular Council Meeting Agenda
Meeting Date: 11/12/2019  
Title:    C-1066-19 - Second Reading - East Pioneer Area Structure Plan Amendment - Easton Neighbourhood - Levasseur
Department: Planning & Infrastructure  
Strategic Vision Element: Where People Choose to Live - A dynamic city with an exceptional quality of life Related Goal: The City maintains a constant inventory of available land, both developed and developable, to ensure businesses can find properties that meet their needs.

Information
Request for Decision Summary
The purpose of this report is to seek second reading of Bylaw C-1066-19, an amendment to the East Pioneer Area Structure Plan (ASP). The amendment removes the Mixed Use land use from the SE 2-53-27-W4 and replaces it with a mix of Commercial, Low to Medium Density Residential, and Medium to High Density Residential. Other changes include the relocation of a storm water management facility, the introduction of the Easton Natural Area, and the identification of a central Park/Open Space in the Easton neighbourhood.

Although the proposed amendment does create a minor reduction in the overall residential density of the area structure plan, Administration considers that this major amendment is in general compliance with the Edmonton Metropolitan Regional Growth Plan. Administration supports this amendment to the East Pioneer ASP.

Proposed Motion
That second reading be given to Bylaw C-1066-19 - East Pioneer Area Structure Plan Amendment - Easton Neighbourhood, as amended.
Background/Analysis
The proposed amendment to the East Pioneer Area Structure Plan (ASP) is focused on the neighbourhood within the SE 2-53-27-W4, proposed to be known as the Easton neighbourhood. The primary amendment is the removal of the future 26.62 ha Mixed Use area that is currently identified along the north of HWY 16A and extending northward into the centre of the quarter section. This Mixed Use area will be replaced with a combination of Commercial, Low to Medium Density Residential, and Medium to High Density Residential.

The departure from the Mixed Use, or Urban Village style of development has been requested by the landowner in response to projected market demand, and City planning for the revitalization of the downtown (Area Redevelopment Plan). Although the Mixed Use description and definition have been removed, the intention is to develop a commercial area that is integrated into the residential portion of the neighbourhood. Policy regarding this interface has been added within the amendment to provide direction for a pedestrian friendly and visually appealing transition. This policy includes provision for the use of landscaping, fencing, screening, and architectural treatments to achieve a beneficial land use transition, and the potential for alternative road cross-sections (to the satisfaction of the City) designed to specifically assist in this transition while maintaining functionality for user groups and the various modes of transportation.

In addition to the removal of the Mixed Use area, the amendment relocates the identified storm water management facility (SWMF) and introduces the Easton Natural Area. Both these changes came as a result of an additional hydrogeological study that identified the proposed natural area lands as unsuitable for the location of the SWMF and uneconomical for development. In light of these findings, and the proposed removal of the Mixed Use area, the open space planning for the Easton neighbourhood has also been revised.

The general road network has been modified in the proposed commercial / residential interface area. A collector loop road has been identified as a transition between the commercial and residential lands in the Easton neighbourhood, and the north/south collector in the Easton neighbourhood has been modified such that there will not be a direct connection onto Highway 16A. These modifications have been made to direct traffic to the arterial roadways and the signalized intersection at Pioneer Road and HWY 16A.

Municipal Development Plan (MDP)
The MDP provides for the development of various commercial areas, with the overall commercial objective (6.2.1) to "Continue to develop Spruce Grove as a regional service and commercial centre." The removal of the Mixed Use area and introduction of the proposed Vehicle Oriented Commercial remains consistent with the overall commercial objective.

An associated MDP amendment (Bylaw C-1065-19) has been submitted to remove the Urban Village land use from the subject lands. Bylaw C-1065-19 also reconfigures the identified future land uses to match those proposed in this amendment. If approved together, the East Pioneer ASP and the MDP will be in compliance with each other.

Edmonton Metropolitan Regional Board (EMRB)
Through the provisions of the Regional Evaluation Framework, the EMRB reviews qualifying plans and amendments for consistency with the Edmonton Metropolitan Region Growth Plan (EMRGP). The EMRGP coordinates long range growth planning and servicing for the region. The EMRGP also identifies standards and criteria that new plans and/or amendments must meet. 

One of the identified criteria for ASP amendments is no net reduction in residential density. Although the East Pioneer ASP was approved under the policy of the former Capital Region Growth Plan, and the EMRGP makes provisions for such plans, it is expected that ASP amendments would move toward the EMRGP target density of 35 du/nrha (dwelling units per net residential hectare). The proposed land use changes in this amendment would cause a slight reduction in the residential density from 34 to 33 du/nrha for the overall ASP area; however, the 53 ha amendment area (within the Easton neighbourhood) will have a residential density greater than 48 du/nrha, which is well above the EMRGP target density of 35 du/nrha for new area structure plans.

With the high residential dwelling unit density proposed within the amendment area, Administration feels that the minor density reduction in the overall plan area is justified in light of the significant land use changes and the supporting rationale. Additionally, the net residential density remains well above the residential density target (25 du/nrha) that was in place at the time the East Pioneer ASP was originally approved under the Capital Region Board Growth Plan. The slight reduction in residential density can also be offset or justified by the anticipated future job generation associated with the proposed land use changes - a projected increase of 70 jobs from the Urban Village concept.

It is the responsibility of Administration to identify this potential conflict with the policy of the EMRGP so that Council can proceed with an understanding of the discrepancies. In this case, Administration is recommending that Council approve the proposed bylaw with the justification for the residential density reduction as outlined in this report and further supplemented in the rationale section of Schedule 1 of Bylaw C-1066-19.

If second reading is approved by Council, proposed Bylaw C-1066-19 will be submitted to the EMRB for review before consideration of third reading.
Options/Alternatives
N/A
Consultation/Engagement
A public open house was held on February 5, 2019 at the Golden Age Club. The meeting was attended by approximately 15 people. Concerns expressed at the meeting included the potential development of higher density residential behind the existing Lakewood area; request for a walkway or linear park at the rear of the existing Lakewood residential lots; a walkway to Jubilee Park; retention of the small wetland near Lakewood; a reduced property value in Lakewood when development occurs; and concerns regarding drainage from the rear of existing lots in Lakewood. Although not all requests could be satisfied, all concerns and suggestions were considered with the revisions to this amendment.

In addition to the public open house, a statutory public hearing was held prior to consideration of second reading.
Implementation/Communication
Following second reading, this bylaw will be forwarded to the EMRB for review.
Impacts
This amendment will eliminate the Mixed Use area as currently identified in the East Pioneer Area Structure Plan. The area was meant to be a developed as an Urban Village that would act as an activity hub for the neighbourhood featuring a mix of higher density residential, commercial, civic, business, public space and other uses. The amendment will enable the development of highway commercial development along HWY 16A with higher to lower density residential uses to the north of the proposed commercial area.

The amendment would result in a minor reduction in the projected residential density, down from 34 units per net residential hectare to 33, and a minor increase in estimated jobs for the area.
Attachments
Bylaw C-1066-19 Second Reading
PowerPoint Presentation

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