A view of the boathouse and beach area of Paradise Shores. (Lisa Joy/Black Press)

Opponents of high-density RV development along Buffalo Lake get one more chance to voice concerns

Appeal hearing today in Stettler

Opponents of a large RV development along Buffalo Lake are appealing the development permit application Stettler County approved for Paradise Shores RV.

The appeal, today at 10 a.m. in the Stettler Community Hall, gives them one more opportunity to fight the RV park they say will destroy their peaceful area, create safety issues and lower their property values as some of the reasons opposing.

In June Stettler County approved the development permit application for the proposed 750 RV site project on 110 acres of land. Nine appeals were filed in July.

“The magnitude of the increased population from the RV Park is sudden and has not allowed infrastructure to budget, grow, hire or to build additional facilities,” said Darcy and Judy Peelar in their filed appeal.“The development permit doesn’t adequately address roads, hospital, EMS, fire or policing requirements.”

Site work started earlier this year. About 360 RV sites will be developed this year. More than 200 sites have been leased and 60 RV’s are parked in a temporary location.

Earlier this year the Summer Villages of Rochon and White Sands filed disputes with the county over the proposed development but later dropped it after agreeing to a reduced density from 1,000 RV stalls to 750.

In March about 400 people attended a public hearing in Stettler for the high-density RV development. Twenty people spoke against and the developer spoke in favour. The county received 32 letters of support and 121 submissions against.

In addition, both Lacombe and Camrose Counties gave Stettler County letters of concern over the project saying the proposed development didn’t comply with the environmental requirements of the Buffalo Lake Inter-municipal Development Plan that requires any changes in land use or development avoid environmentally sensitive areas and important wildlife habitat. The opposing counties took issue with the developer not completing requirements of the Environmental Review because the environmental studies only covered Phase I of the development but the developer asked for approval for all three phases.

Paradise Shores RV Resort development includes a clubhouse, fitness area, coffee and juice bar, a swimming pool and tennis.

According to RV Sites Canada Vice-President Mark Burke, the development has already injected millions into Stettler’s economy through local contractors, hiring labourers and buying food and supplies for the site and work crews.

The appeal process is expected to take several days. The subsequent hearing dates will be set by the appeal board.

 

Campers at the Paradise Shores site July 5. (Lisa Joy/Black Press)

Construction is ongoing at Paradise Shores. (Lisa Joy/Black Press)

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