Council supporting mobile park

Property owner lauded for ongoing improvements

Sicamous council is welcoming a zoning amendment for a mobile park near downtown.

Deb Heap’s Riverside Landing project at 201 Martin Street is up for rezoning from R3 multi-family residential to R4 mobile home residential.

Currently at third reading, following council’s April 12 meeting, the rezoning is to allow Heap to place a seventh mobile home on the lot.

A staff memo explains the property was zoned R3 in 1995, but a development proposal was not received with the rezoning, leaving the property with six mobile units. The R3 zoning does not allow the addition of another mobile unit, leaving Heap to pursue the rezoning.

Heap purchased the property in 2014, and began the process of cleaning up the non-conforming mobile park.

“It was in a horrible state and had a huge negative affect on the street and neighbours,” writes Heap in a letter to council. “It was in a high-profile area that caused it to reflect badly on the entire community.”

Council received four other letters in support of the proposed rezoning and praising Heap for the work she has done.

“She has been a very good thing for the area, has done a lot of work to clean it up and make it a better place to live for all that are there,” writes Mike Olde.

Council also received two letters opposed to the rezoning, their writers concerned it would lower property values and further exemplify an inconsistency in development.

“What Sicamous has done is approve an anything-goes development approach, intermingling commercial and light industrial development with low-end residential and higher-end home and condo developments. The result is business and developers are hesitant to invest in Sicamous,” writes Dave Balicki.

Councillors commended Heap for the work she has done, but not all were agreeable to the rezoning. Coun. Janna Simons called it a step backwards from the recently completed official community plan, which identifies the property as Town Centre-Riverside Transitional, and supports the R3 zoning.

Heap addresses the land use in her letter, stating that when economic conditions warrant it, she anticipates it will be amended to fit with future iterations of the OCP.

“Right now, the best use of this property is the existing use, with the addition of one unit to improve the appearance, the tax and servicing efficiency and to increase the affordable home stock, which is a critical requirement in Sicamous,” writes Heap.

The rezoning now goes to final reading.

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