Land bylaw rezoned, old hospital remains

Land the old hospital sits on may see a facelift in the near future.

Land the old hospital sits on may see a facelift in the near future.

Councillors passed third reading amending the land-use bylaw to high density residential, low density residential and institutional public use, for portions of the property Sept. 24 after a public hearing.

Owner Erick Schmidt, with Envirotrust Research Foundation, spoke of the first stage of plans to develop condominium units on the west side of the property. “I hope it’ll be beneficial for the town.”

He believes the development is ideal for professionals working in larger centres who want options other than living in a city such as Edmonton. Potential for the old hospital building is still being discussed with Alberta Health Services (AHS) so no major changes will be done to the building.

Schmidt wants to enhance the grounds around the hospital while the condominium projects are being planned. Coun. Rick Bonnett asked if a schedule is set for the old hospital. “What’s the timeline to either retrofit it or at least make it presentable?”

Planner Cory Hansen said the company is reluctant to put too much money into the building before anything is finalized with AHS. “We want to dress up the landscaping.”

Coun. Loanna Gulka questioned construction timeframes. “What is your time for actually moving forward with this project?”

Although Schmidt did not give a definite date his hope is to start construction next year. He intends to host an open house to give residents an idea of his plans. Hansen said they plan for one and two bedroom units. “We’re going to aim for 1,200 square feet for our two bedroom units.”

The single bedroom units would be approximately 900 square feet, he added.