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A request by a Faust, Alberta, property owner to Big Lakes County that would allow a 10-unit private family campground is taking another step forward, according to The News.

At its regular meeting on June 24, the council passed a motion to direct the administration to prepare a bylaw to amend the Faust Area Structure Plan (ASP). The motion calls for the property on 4A Street West [NW 9-73-11-W5] to be redesignated to recreation/seasonal from mixed-use in the land-use concept map.

The council approved the recommendation from Pat Olansky, director of planning and development. She says the ASP bylaw will be presented to the council at its regular meeting on July 8, when a date for a public hearing will be set.

Council also gave second reading to land-use bylaw 09-2020 to rezone the property to communal recreation from hamlet residential.

The reading followed a public hearing June 10 for an application from Dwayne Gaboury, of Fairview, to redistrict his 22.845-acre property to allow a campground that he wants to use to accommodate 10 camping units for his family.

Six letters of opposition were presented at the public hearing.

However, the family of the landowner says many of those people now support the proposal who were first opposing.

Just before the meeting on June 24, council received a letter from Gaboury and his daughter, Becca Moodie, of Wembley, executor of rezoning and permitting,

“After clarifying our plan with neighbors, including some of whom submitted letters opposing the original application [commercial], most are now in favor of our plan to rezone to communal recreation,” Moodie says. “We are working diligently on gathering documentation of support from the community to move forward with preserving the green space and rezone to communal recreation using the original access point on 4A Street West.”

She said the plans were discussed with neighbors on the weekend of June 19-21.

“We feel we should have provided them with more information about our intentions for the property sooner,” Moodie writes in the letter. “We apologized for their misunderstandings as some of them assumed or were led to believe by others who were misinformed, that this was going to be a commercial campground opened to the public. We applied to rezone to communal recreation, not commercial recreation.”

Camping units would be located a fair distance from neighbors, she confirmed as she discussed the letter and proposal with the council.

“We are trying to get as far away from neighbors as possible,” Moodie says.

She says the family is committed to being good stewards in the community.

“We want to preserve the integrity and beauty of the land and the small portion of the creek on our land that we have lovingly named Birch Bluff,” the letter says. “We would also love the opportunity to run some quad trails through the remaining property. Our hope is that you will consider letting us keep this area as green space for personal use and not have another group of uncleared residential lots that are going to sit vacant. Let us support the community by spending our time and money there.”

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