A long-standing dispute between White City and the RM of Edenwold over zoning designations of land in the RM appears to be closer to a resolution.
At the RM’s Dec. 15 council meeting planning manager Jana Jedlic said correspondence from White City indicated the town is prepared to remove from its own future land use maps the “future urban commercial” designation on RM-controlled land north of the Trans-Canada Highway near the Highway 48 interchange. However, the RM says there are other White City maps also containing errors about land in the RM of Edenwold.
Another concern revolved around White City planning maps indicating “areas with drainage concerns” on RM land, as the maps were made without consulting the RM of Edenwold.
“The RM is opposed to the map alteration until such a time as the RM and the affected landowners have been properly informed and consulted,” Jedlic said. “They need to be able to provide feedback on whether they agree with this plan.”
Jedlic said the Town’s correspondence indicated the land highlighted for potential drainage in the areas of Aspen Village and Fairway South has been reduced, and the overland drainage issues had been localized and mitigated as development progressed.
“I still don’t know where that’s coming from as we still don’t have a permanent drainage solution implemented yet,” Jedlic said. “We have one drawn, but it hasn’t been implemented yet.”
Jedlic said the map as drawn showed the area as potential drainage, which still left questions. For example, a storm retention pond in the area was supposed to be a temporary measure until a permanent drainage solution was built, Jedlic said.
“I genuinely can’t come up with any rationale to support why that’s the only limited area with drainage concerns as I still believe there is a wider drainage concern,” Jedlic said, as she advised council to continue opposing that map until there is a complete drainage plan for the area and there is agreement from the area land developers supporting those changes.
Another issue related to road classification networks and how they connect between the two municipalities. Jedlic noted seven errors on the RM side of a White City map, which would need to be changed in order to be accurate. One error included an all-weather designation for a road which is actually a dirt road for seasonal use. Other roads, such as Huber Bay, appeared to be missing entirely. In other cases, even buildings were missing.
“For some reason, the strip mall for the Ice House is shown but our office doesn’t exist,” Jedlic said. “Or Shoppers and IGA are there but another building doesn’t exist. We don’t know why, but it appears throughout the town maps.”
Again, Jedlic said the RM was not consulted in advance of those maps being prepared by White City, a factor which may have led to the errors.
“The response we got from the town was the map provides direction for road connectivity, road designation and road classification for those roads in the Town of White City,” Jedlic said. “Arterial and collector roads have been identified following the designations and configurations initially recommended by the NMM Group in the Town of White City Traffic Study, and are consistent with the road networks as described in the Emerald Park traffic study dated 2015 and commissioned by the RM of Edenwold. It is the town’s intention to identify a road network that continues and is compatible with surrounding neighbourhoods to reduce potential connectivity conflicts and to take advantage of what the region has to offer. However, the town is prepared to amend this map.”
Jedlic said there is a shared interest in ensuring the roads used by the two municipalities connect the two communities.
“There is a broader issue that every time the town goes to create maps that include the RM area over the past five years, we never get consulted and there are always inaccuracies and mistakes in our area,” Jedlic said. “The main reason a jurisdiction doesn’t do maps for another jurisdiction is exactly that.”
Councillor Wayne Joyce said the best solution would be for White City to put its own roads on its own maps, and leave the RM of Edenwold to do the same for its own municipality.
“The arterial issue is important but I think people will see it without them putting it on the map,” Joyce said. “If I want to know about White City roads, I should contact White City. If I want to know about RM roads, I should contact the RM.”
Keith Borkowsky, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Quad Town Forum