Local Area Plan Addresses Key Issues facing the Village
Mount Washington Alpine Resort is working with the Comox Valley Regional District to come up with an Integrated Resort Community Plan (IRCP).
A Report was released April 10, but at the Marmot’s deadline, had not been brought before the Regional Board yet.
The purpose of the Report, prepared by CTQ Consultants Ltd. of Kelowna, is to build on the current Mount Washington Local Area Plan, as part of the CVRD’s larger Regional Growth Strategy. Mount Washington has been recognized as a 'new settlement node'.
Public input was solicited through an online survey between Jan. 19 and Feb. 18, 2012. Consultants also visited the Resort Jan. 20-21 with a display explaining the process. A total of 119 completed surveys were received, with roughly half (48.7%) being from property owners. Comox Valley residents (34.2%) were the next largest number of respondents.
The biggest issue raised throughout the consultation process was the lack of fire protection at the Resort, as well as the lack of other public services such as police and ambulance. Respondents felt the lack of fire protection is an issue affecting future development.
Snow management was the second most important issue to respondents, broken down into two categories: removal and storage, and sanding and runoff. Respondents expressed the desire for co-ordination of snow removal, which they feel is important given the way snow falls fast and heavily during the winter months.
A corresponding concern was the lack of parking, especially when snow storage compromises parking space; even in the shoulder seasons, when large piles are left to melt naturally.
Parking issues extended to residential areas, where non-resort visitor parking is almost non-existent during the winter, as well as the desire for a larger parking area at the base of Strathcona Parkway.
Other concerns included environmental impact of runoff, lack of community-based parks and recreation opportunities and amenities for people who live at Mount Washington, lack of design guidelines for development and the need for a cohesive village centre. Many survey participants noted the present commercial area could use better connectivity to existing residential areas.
A summary of CTQ Consultants’ report as well as other information on the survey process is available online at www.mountwashingtonircp.ca.