New OCP adopted in Kent

Council votes unanimously following lengthy public consultation process

After more than a year and a half of public consultation and planning, there is a new Official Community Plan in the District of Kent.

The new plan was adopted at Monday night’s council meeting, with a few amendments that evolved from the final public hearing held on June 24 at the Friendship House.

The new OCP now does contain “stronger language in regards to the Agassiz-Rosedale bridge,” stated Darcey Kohuch, director of development services. Specifically, he said that the district would like to speak with the Ministry of Transportation about the possibility of a four lane bridge.

The new OCP states: “Considering that serious traffic accidents continue to occur on the Rosedale-Agassiz bridge, as well as lack of capacity and considerable safety concerns, the District shall continue to work with the province and Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure so they may provide the necessary funding and a short and long term implementation plan” for bike and pedestrian lanes that are separate from vehicle lanes. It also mentions relocating the lights to safer locations and eventually replacing the entire bridge.

The new OCP also places more emphasis on the troubles along Rockwell Drive, in particular the need for that area to have an evacuation route. Many of the changes were a direct result of the latest consultations with the public, including the mention of a helipad potentially being placed at the breakwater along Rockwell Drive, to minimize the time patients are in transit after accidents in Sasquatch Park or along Rockwell Drive.

There was a change to map which incorrectly portrayed a trail, along with a handful of minor amendments and housekeeping changes.

“Some language had to be changed to be more accurate,” Kohuch said.

They also beefed up language that would support more home based businesses, and to allow for additional dwellings on ALR if a need is demonstrated,

Mayor John Van Laerhoven acknowledged the lengthy process of the OCP.

“It took well over a year and a half,” he said, calling it a “difficult process.”

“We need a plan that addresses the wishes of the community as a whole rather than individuals,” he added.

Councillor Duane Post noted that some of the concerns were not addressed, including the potential for growth in the Morrow Road area.

“I imagine it would be hard to look out the window one day and see a four story townhouse,” he said. “But there’s a balance between trying to grow and trying to save farmland.”

Councillor Holger Schwichtenberg agreed that the process was long, and many people participated, but lamented that not enough businesses participated.

“People were given ample opportunity to express their opinions,” he said. “One of the biggest disappointments I had was the response from local businesses.”

He said that while he’s sure the OCP won’t please everyone, there will be a chance to redo it all over again in the future.

An OCP is usually written every 10 years and makes plans for community development over the next 40 years.

news@ahobserver.com

Just Posted

Agassiz fire chief retiring after 28-year career

Wayne Dyer passing on role to deputy chief and long-time colleage Gerald Basten

Four chances to see Chilliwack Symphony Orchestra’s Messiah in the Valley

Chilliwack Symphony Orchestra brings Handels’ Messiah to Chilliwack, Abbotsford, Langley, Aldergrove

Lots of laughs at Bozzini’s holiday concert in Chilliwack

Double bill performance features rock n’ roll duo Kitty & the Rooster, cabaret musician Shirley Gnome

Photos: The Contenders rock the Blue Moose Coffee Shop Friday

Valdy and Gary Fjellgaard came together as (The) Contenders to play music… Continue reading

Lawyer for Chinese exec detained by Canada says it’s ‘inconceivable’ she would flee

Meng Wanzhou was detained at the request of the U.S. during a layover at the Vancouver airport

Federal government plans examination of coerced sterilization

The Liberals have been pressed for a rapid response to recent reports on the sterilizations

Huitema, Cornelius named 2018 Canadian Youth International Players of the Year

Huitema was captain of Canada’s fourth-place team at this year’s FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup

Canada not slowing emissions from oil and gas: environmental groups

New report released at the United Nations climate talks in Poland

Liberal Party moves Trudeau fundraiser from military base

The fundraiser is scheduled for Dec. 19, with tickets costing up to $400

Pipeline protesters arrested at B.C. university

Three protesters were arrested after TRU property allegedly vandalized with red paint

Family calls for change after death of B.C. man at St. Paul’s Hospital

Hospital beds for patients with both medical and mental-health issues are ‘very limited’: coroner

Goodale to ‘examine’ transfer of Rafferty to medium-security prison

Michael Rafferty was sentenced to life in prison in 2012 in the kidnapping, sexual assault and first-degree murder of Tori Stafford

‘Abhorrent’ condition of autistic B.C. boy shows flaws in care system: report

‘Charlie’ was underweight and ‘covered in feces’ when he was removed from his mom’s care

Most Read