The next regular council meeting is on December 3. File photo

District of Sparwood hits pause on temporary housing project

Plus funding for archery range approved; cannabis consumption bylaw considered; and more

The District of Sparwood has hit pause on a temporary housing project while it awaits a decision from the B.C. Government.

In September, The Free Press reported Edmonton company GNS Industrial Trailer Services proposed to build a lodge that would accommodate 150-200 workers over the next 24-36 months.

LOOK BACK: Temporary housing project proposed in Sparwood

It would include 114 executive style beds, an office and check in area, full kitchen and dining facility, and recreation space, with a property at 8000 Highway 43 earmarked for the project.

GNS said the lodge would meet short-term housing needs in Sparwood amid expansion plans at a nearby mine.

At the November 19 meeting, council postponed consideration of a public hearing on a Temporary Use Permit for the housing project until the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure has approved the access plan to the site from Highway 43.

Other council briefs:

Archery range funding request

The District of Sparwood hopes to hit a bullseye with local youth by supporting the development of an archery range.

At the November 19 meeting, councillors approved the Youth Advisory Commission’s request for $7500 in funding to be used for a grant application.

They will support the Commission’s application to the Columba Basin Trust’s Basin PLAYS Capital Improvement Grant program for up to $32,500 for the development of an archery range.

The 2018 Youth Engagement Survey shows archery is the second most popular activity among local youth, just behind camping.

If the grant application is successful, it will provide access to a sporting activity not currently available in Sparwood.

Douglas Fir Highway 3 Water Looping

At the November 19 meeting, council approved submitting an application to the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program Rural and Northern Communities Program for funding for the Douglas Fir – Highway 3 Water Looping Project.

If the grant application is successful, there will be one-third cost sharing between the District of Sparwood and Canadian and British Columbia governments.

Cannabis consumption regulations

Council has provided second and third readings to a bylaw that will regulate the consumption of cannabis in Sparwood.

The Clean Air Bylaw No. 1241, 2018 proposes to:

• mirror the provincial regulations regarding outdoor consumption of cannabis in public places for tobacco use;

• include the provincial regulations for the six metre buffers into the Bylaw to provide the Bylaw Enforcement Officer with tools to bring about compliance with provincial regulations;

• authorize the Director of Community and Facility Services to designate smoking areas at or near municipal facilities; and

• provide details related to signage requirements.

Temporary trail closure

A water line replacement project has closed portions of the Elk River Trail until February 2019.

According to a release issued by the District of Sparwood, construction has begun and will result in the periodic closure of the trails near the Elk River Crossing Bridge.

“For your safety, please respect the trail closures and stay away from construction,” read the release.

“Thank you for your understanding and cooperation while we install this new water line.”

The next regular council meeting will be held in Council Chambers on Monday, December 3 at 6 p.m.

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