Thomson Flats Area Structure Plan
Melcor Developments Ltd. is in the process of creating an Area Structure Plan (ASP) for Thomson Flats: an area consisting of five parcels covering 255.53 hectares (631.43 acres) located along the City’s southern boundary between Chute Lake Road to the west and Bellevue Creek to the East.
In the Official Community Plan (OCP), the lands are currently designated as "Future Urban Reserve" and fall within the City's permanent growth boundary.
After a multi-year process with several opportunities for public input, the applicant team (Melcor and Canadian Horizons) has submitted their draft ASP for review by the City.
Following detailed review by City staff, the applicant team will incorporate City feedback and refine their ASP in preparation for Council consideration. Once the applicant team is satisfied with their final ASP document, City staff will bring the ASP forward to Council for consideration. The staff report will include a recommendation for Council, representing the collective position of the City’s professional staff.
If Council elects to endorse the plan as presented, there would remain several stages of approvals required prior to construction. Before they can begin construction, the applicant will have to apply for an OCP amendment, rezoning, development permits, subdivision and building permits. Another public hearing would be required during the OCP amendment and rezoning process, giving residents a further opportunity to review the project at a more detailed level.
On March 3, 2014, Kelowna City Council authorized the preparation of a two-phase ASP for a maximum of 1,400 housing units (800 units in Phase 1 and 1, 600 units in Phase 2).
In May 2016, the applicant began work on Phase 1. A Phase 1 Report summarizing the study results is available. An open house was held by the applicant on June 28, 2017; the results are summarized in their Open House Summary Report.
An Area Structure Plan is a long-range planning document that works with the OCP to provide direction for development. While the OCP provides a high-level vision for development of the city as a whole, an ASP provides more detailed guidance for a specific area. It allows landowners to work with City staff to figure out how development in the area can best meet City objectives. An ASP looks at issues like appropriate land uses, servicing (e.g. sewers and roads), environmental protection, hazardous conditions, form and character, parks and community resources and heritage.
The OCP identifies specific areas within the city where an ASP is required. An ASP is expected to reflect the overall goals and policy direction of the OCP. While it is endorsed by Council, an ASP is not a bylaw. Once complete, key directions from the ASP are used to inform updates to City bylaws, such as the OCP and Zoning Bylaws.