Springbank residents meet to protest development

Some Springbank residents are in for another fight over a development near Calaway Park.

Members of the community west of Calgary say proposal could ruin rural feel

An open house on the matter is planned for Wednesday night from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Springbank Heritage Club, according to the developer's website. (CBC)

Some Springbank residents are in for another fight over a development near Calaway Park.

Some members of the community, which lies just west of Calgary, held a private meeting Monday night to talk about Bingham Crossing — a proposal for a seniors’ complex and some retail and offices.

They say they’re worried that it will ruin the rural feel of Springbank.

"I think it's too much for the area. We don't need it — we don't want it," says Sharon Anderson, who has lived in the area for 20 years.

She says even though this proposal has been scaled back from what was first presented to Rocky View County, it doesn't fit. Anderson says she is not against development, but feels the project is too big.

"I suggest they keep going back to the drawing board and keep talking to the people and find out what they want. Just because you buy big chunks of land out here doesn't mean that you can do whatever you want with it," says Anderson.

"I have my land and we came out here for the lifestyle that we want and I keep moving further and further out because of the development that keeps coming along."

Community consulted

Rocky View County Reeve Rolly Ashdown says he thinks the proposal is the right development for the area.

Ashdown says he's hearing a lot of things about the size of the development, but says developers listened to residents’ concerns and have come back with a very different proposal.

"It's not going to be a great big huge mall in the middle of paradise that blocks everybody's views. That's not what we're going to allow to happen here."

Ashdown says in two years there have been about 12 open houses and extensive consultation with residents, saying the developer’s proposal matches what the residents have asked them to do.

Still, Ashdown says there's a long way to go on the plans, including a meeting on land use later this month.

The county won’t make any final decisions until they see the master site development plan which is a long way down the road, says Ashdown.

Rocky View County Coun. Kim Magnuson voted against the project.

"We're having a little bit of a collision of cultures here," says Magnuson.

"We have acreage owners who want a quiet lifestyle, we have developers who want to develop some land and we've got seniors crushed in the middle."

The matter is expected to come back before Rocky View County council for a public hearing on land use on Oct. 30 at 1:30 p.m. MT.

According to the developer's website, the developable area within the current redesignation area is only approximately 13 hectares. The remainder of the land to be redesignated for other purposes, including open space, regional trails, county road widening and stormwater management ponds. (binghamcrossing.com)