City Council considered an amendment to Zoning Bylaw No. 1850 at the Regular Council Meeting on Oct. 13, submitted by Purcell Collegiate Incorporated.
The application proposes amendments to the CD-7 Comprehensive Development Zone (CD-7), which applies to the approximately 2.1 hectares of land located south of Highway 95A and 305 Street between Mark Creek and 302 Avenue, adjacent to the Kimberley Golf Course.
The purpose of these proposed zoning changes intend to allow for development of the proposed Purcell Collegiate international boarding school campus, which anticipates the inclusion of a wide range of facilities including school buildings, sports facilities, outdoor learning areas, student housing and shared living, dining and study spaces.
The school and accommodation facilities are anticipated to be designed for an initial intake of 150 students and to accommodate expansion for up to 300.
Some of the changes to the existing CD-7 Zone include a revised list of permitted uses to replace the seniors housing and healthcare uses with a mix of educational, commercial, residential and recreational uses to accommodate the proposed school campus.
Some increases to building setbacks are proposed, but the maximum building height and site coverage restrictions are not proposed to change.
The proposed regulations will also include additional density regulations to restrict the maximum floor space ratio. It is also proposed that the CD-7 zone be added to the list of zones that are exempt from specific parking requirements.
Council heard from a couple of callers and received a letter of support for the project from Bob and Corinne Gilchrist, which was also signed by numerous other individuals.
“We, the undersigned, feel that Purcell International Education’s well-documented plans to operate a school in Kimberley will be very beneficial to our community and will add to our vibrancy and sustainability,” the letter said.
The Gilchrists said they support the building of the school for a number of reasons including the creation of jobs, positive financial ramifications and the enrichment of the community and its residents with the cultural contributions of an international student body.
Jared Thompson, who phoned in to the Council meeting, said:
“I think it’s going to be great for the City of Kimberley. I’m excited for the amenities and the programs that it could bring to the students of Selkirk School and the diversity of population here a little bit albeit they’ll be visitors. I just love the project so I’m excited to see this going through.”
Manager of Planning and Sustainability Troy Pollock remarked that it’s “rare to see” letters addressing a zoning amendment be only supportive, crediting Purcell Collegiate for informing and working with the community.
Council voted to accept the third reading and adopted the zoning amendment.