Athabasca County (Alberta, Canada) councilors have given the go-ahead to re-zone the Athabasca Acres RV Resort, paving the way for potential growth and development.
In a March meeting, the council members voted 8-1 to transition the land from an agricultural to a commercial campground district. This decision marks a significant step forward for the resort, which has been operational since 2013 and changed hands to its current owners in 2021.
Situated approximately 16.5 kilometers from the Town of Athabasca, the 50-stall seasonal campground is poised for expansion, thanks to the re-zoning approval. The resort owners, however, are fully aware that they must secure a development permit before moving forward with any construction or growth plans.
In a letter read during a public hearing, the owners expressed their understanding of the process and their commitment to respecting neighboring properties and the environment.
The campground’s re-zoning process began with the first reading of Bylaw 002-2023 on February 8, after which adjacent property owners raised no objections. The public hearing also saw no opposition to the proposed change.
The resort’s owners emphasized in their letter that no issues had been reported by neighboring farmers, residents, or authorities regarding the property and its use.
During the council meeting, Division 5 Coun. Tracy Holland raised concerns about preserving agricultural land, inquiring about the number of acres currently in use and those required for expansion.
In response, acting chief administrative officer and director of planning and development, Christa Wilkinson clarified that the property is primarily wetland, with only a small portion suitable for haying. Wilkinson estimated that around 20-30 acres had been cleared while the remaining land was covered in bush.
Alberta Forestry and Parks’ lands delivery division expressed no objections to the re-zoning but stressed the importance of conducting a wetlands assessment before initiating any development projects.
As the re-zoning process concludes, the Athabasca Acres RV Resort now faces the task of obtaining a development permit and ensuring the preservation of the surrounding environment as they work towards expansion.