Rossland city council has decided not to let owners rezone their vacant property at 920 Redstone Dr. to allow for the construction of a duplex.
Dozens of Rosslanders attended a public hearing on Aug. 10 to speak out against the proposed plan and voice their concerns around parking, impacts on other homeowners’ views and the size and height of the duplex if it was approved.
“Things have changed in Rossland in recent years and there are more people who want to build and more people looking for smaller homes,” said mayor Kathy Moore.
“However, in this case, we decided after listening to the community that we would not rezone this lot for a duplex. It’s a disappointment to the owner, however I think it’s the right decision for that portion of the community.”
The surrounding properties around the vacant lot are comprised of single-family homes.
Despite the decision, city staff originally recommended approval of the zoning amendment to keep the project in line with the city’s official community plan (OCP).
“The OCP strongly supports increasing density and introducing different housing tenures in all parts of Rossland, where infrastructure already exists,” said a report by city planner Stacey Lightbourne.
“This type of housing appeals to both ends of the emerging demographic market: older empty nesters looking to downsize and younger residents seeking affordable entry level housing.”
Rossland’s population increased almost 14 per cent between 2006 and 2016, according to the 2019 annual city report.
Council is still looking at densifying certain portion of the city, according to Moore.
“We’ve definitely been in favour of duplexes, especially in the centre core,” she said.
“However, this Redstone area is a different deal and it’s a purpose-built community. The development was primarily single-family homes in these places and people who purchased property there bought it with the understanding that it was going to be single-family homes.”
The city will soon review its OCP and Moore said it could raise discussions about the need for more duplexes and other types of homes around Redstone.