The current draft land use plan.

The current draft land use plan.

Benchlands vote to come up at Council tonight

A controversy over the zoning of the Marysville bench lands is playing out ahead of changes to the Official Community Plan for Kimberley — expected some time next year.

The issue is scheduled to come up at Kimberley Council tonight, Monday, October 23, at the regular Council meeting at 7 p.m., as Mayor Don McCormick has requested a Notice of Motion around the Benchlands.

The motion Council will vote on reads:

WHEREAS new revenue is a strategic priority of City Council;

AND WHEREAS industrial taxes are needed to take the upward pressure off the residential and business tax bases as infrastructure renewal and demand for City services grows;

AND WHEREAS Kimberley’s growing population needs jobs to attract and retain them here;

AND WHEREAS appropriately zoned land is needed to attract businesses who will provide the new tax money and jobs;

AND WHEREAS the City of Kimberley has an abundance of recreational and residential lands;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the City-owned property known as the Marysville bench lands be designated for Industrial development in the draft OCP to be consistent with its current Industrial zoning.

A business, Sullivan Machine Works presented to Council earlier this month, indicating they would be interested in locating their machining business on the bench lands property.

Coun. Bev Middlebrook has been leading the charge against such zoning, arguing for the land to not be developed but left as a recreational area that Marysville residents and others have been enjoying for years.

The history of the zoning on these particular lands is a bit confusing.

Troy Pollock, the City’s Manager of Planning Services, provided a timeline.

“The current zoning of the Benchlands property is Industrial and has been since the 70s. With the adoption of the Official Community Plan (Bylaw 2233) in 2005, the land was designated for future Residential development however the Industrial zoning was never changed to align with the OCP land use designation. In the current draft update to the OCP, it is proposed that a portion (approximately 47%) of the Benchlands property be re-designated for future Industrial development. This includes only the portion considered suitable for future development which is the flatter sections of the site between Jim Ogilvie Way and the walking trails at the top edge of the hillside. The balance of the property is proposed to be designated Recreation & Open Space which includes those portions considered not suitable for development being the steep hillsides, the walking trail at top of hillsides, and the existing water utility infrastructure.”

Summary of OCP and Zoning – Benchlands Property

1971 (Zoning Bylaw 911) – Land zoned “I-1” Industrial, Wholesale and Transportation

1994 (OCP Bylaw 1846) – Land designated “M” Industrial in OCP Land Use Plan

1994 (Zoning Bylaw 1850) – Land zoned “M-1” Industrial, Wholesale and Transportation

2005 (OCP Bylaw 2233) – Land designated Low-density Residential in OCP Land Use Plan

2018 (Draft OCP Update) – Propose changes to Benchlands designation in the OCP Land Use Plan

Pollock explained that there are two levels of land use designation — the OCP being the highest level, and then the next level down being a zoning bylaw.

“In 1994, in the OCP and zoning the lands were industrial. Then in 2005, an update to the OCP changed the zoning to residential. That update was adopted in 2005. Typically, what would follow would be a zoning review to update that as well, but that never happened.”

Pollock said it was likely that it was known that there was environmental remediation that needed to occur on the lands and the thinking was that they would get the environmental stuff in place first, then proceed with rezoning. The environmental process has dragged on for over ten years and the rezoning never happened.

“There is a mismatch between the OCP and what is actually zoned,” he said. “As development plans progress, that is when you get everything aligned.”

Just Posted

Residents line up outside the Vernon Recreation Complex for their COVID-19 vaccine Saturday, June 5. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
No appointments necessary for first dose COVID-19 vaccine: Interior Health

People can just show up at clinics, register on the spot and get the shot

Ryan McKenzie of the Kimberley Trails Society made an in-depth presentation to City Council describing the initial steps of the Electrify the Mountains eBike trails project. This is a look at the project one map.
Kimberley City Council hears details on Electrify the Mountain project

At the meeting of City Council on Tuesday, June 8 Ryan McKenzie… Continue reading

The Kimberley Public Library invites kids of all ages to join the 2021 BC Summer Reading Club. Kimberley Public Library file
Kimberley kids invited to join summer reading club at Public Library

The Kimberley Public Library invites kids of all ages to join the… Continue reading

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry on Thursday, June 10, mentioned Grand Forks among two other COVID “hot spots” in B.C. Photo: Screenshot - YouTube COVID-19 BC Update, June 10, 2021
PHO Henry says West Kootenay city is a COVID ‘hot spot’ in B.C.

There are 11 cases of COVID-19 in the Grand Forks local health area, according the BC CDC

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Police cars are seen parked outside Vancouver Police Department headquarters on Saturday, January 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police officer charged with assault during an arrest in 2019

The service has released no other details about the allegations

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Christian Eriksen in stable condition, Euro 2020 match resumes

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps off Vancouver Island

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Most Read