Hwy 3 expansion holds up permitting for Crowsnest Pass RV park

·2 min read

A company that owns a Crowsnest Pass RV park is asking municipal council to reconsider its decision not to sell off public land that was inadvertently built on when the park expanded its operations a little over 10 years ago.

Appearing at chambers May 16, Dominion CampCorp’s Karen Will and Dean Paprotka presented the company’s request on behalf of Mark Kirwin, manager at DCC’s Green Mountain RV Park.

At issue is whether or not council will sell DCC a municipal right of way on Coleman’s 67th Avenue, south of the Crowsnest River. Council has twice voted down the sale, according to chief administrative officer Patrick Thomas — once in 2022 and a second time earlier this year.

The RV expansion added 56 new sites to Green Mountain, eight of which encroach upon the right of way (presently undeveloped) by roughly 10 metres (around 30 feet). The municipal planning commission conditionally retroactively approved the completed expansion last January, subject to a host of conditions.

One stipulates that DCC must rectify the encroachment through an agreement with the municipality, according to an MPC memo attached to council’s May 16 agenda. DCC wants to resolve the issue by buying the right of way from the municipality, which would require a road closure bylaw from council.

Council decides all municipal land dealings in camera, according to Alberta’s Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. While council’s deliberations haven’t been released, Mayor Blair Painter told Will and Paprotka that the right of way could form part of a twinned Highway 3.

The precise routing of the twinned highway, itself a highly contentious issue, awaits a two-year engineering and design process over which council has no authority.

The municipality has given DCC until April 2024 to meet several conditions listed in the MPC’s 2022 development permit. If there’s no resolution by next spring, a stop order will come into effect, halting DCC’s operations at each of the 56 sites built during the expansion.

Thomas said the encroaching sites would probably have to be relocated somewhere else within the RV park.

Coun. Vicki Kubik asked Will why DCC allowed Green Mountain residents to go ahead with landscaping projects on the offending sites after the company was made aware of the encroachment.

Will said DCC and the municipality had arrived at an encroachment agreement “in principle” in 2016, with Paprotka adding that DCC had this in writing.

“They didn’t have anything in writing,” Thomas told Shootin’ the Breeze on Friday.

Council will decide what actions to take, if any, at some point in the future, according to Mayor Painter.

Laurie Tritschler, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Shootin' the Breeze