Regional District Sets New Zoning for Valemount Glacier Resort
Prince George, B.C.- The Valemount Glacier Destination Project is close to clearing one more hurdle. The Regional District of Fraser Fort George has approved 3Rd reading of changes to the Official Community Plan and rezoning for the project.
The project has just received approval from the Provincial Government (see previous story) and now waits for a land use agreement to be developed.
The project calls for the development of a 2000 bed -unit resort village, year round glacier skiing, and gondola access for alpine sightseeing.
The Regional District is in the process ofl designating the subject area as “Resort Commercial” area, and has established five zones within that designation.
- Valemount Residential 1 permits residential single family homes with the bed and breakfast or tourist accommodation as secondary uses
- Valemount Residential 2 allows residential two family and residential multi-family buildings. The multi family buildings would be primarily for employee housing and may include limited retail or food establishment uses, but not tourist accomodation
- Village Commercial 1 is for the main village core consisting o the resourt services, commercial uses and overnight accommodation, inlduing day lodges, hotels and multi-family residential buildings with tourist accomodation
- Alpine Recreation 1 includes the remainder of the subject area outside of the village core and residential areas. allows, mountain top restaurants, ski facilities and other outdoor recreation uses
- General Permitted uses, includes maintenance facilities, parking lots, open space parks, signs, utility installations and ski facilities.
The development is located west of Valemount in the Premier Range of the mountains. Valemount Mayor Jeannette Townsend is thrilled and is confident the project has the right financial backing to move forward “They have investors from Toronto, two well know investors who are in Toronto in the development and real estate business and they have committed to investing.”
She says the development of the master agreement with the Province could take up to 3 months to complete and construction could start soon after “They are hoping to get started in the spring, and they are hoping to be skiing next Christmas (2017) They might not have accommodation ready by then, but they want to have the ski run and gondola in place.”
The project is very important to the community of Valemount and the Robson Valley says Mayor Townsend “It’s going to mean positive economic well being for the community. I don’t see thousands of people moving to Valemount as some people are saying, maybe a couple of hundred, and you know what, for a community the size of Valemount, eleven hundred and some people, that’s quite a difference. Every family means having one or two more children in school, and it will eventually require another teacher, which will mean another bank employee, another grocery store employee because there’s a spin off.”
She says the construction of the various components of the project will mean more jobs, and once the site is operational, there will be more employment for those working at the resort.
“I see benefits for the entire Province because it will attract tourists from around the world.”
The Regional District is expected to give the OCP and zoning changes final approval at its September Board meeting.