Draft versions of Rossland’s Life and Environment Action plans will be presented to the public later this month and residents are being invited to provide valuable input.
Prepared by second-year Selkirk College Integrated Environmental Planning Program students, the draft plans will be the unveiled at an open house on Monday, March 14 at the Old Fire Hall (2115 Queen Street) in Rossland between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. The meeting is an opportunity for citizens to familiarize themselves with the draft plans. There will be a formal presentation and group question-and-answer session at 6:30 p.m.
Students in Selkirk College’s Integrated Environmental Planning Program did field reconnaissance in Rossland last spring.
“There has been a great deal of work put into this plan with lots of input from community members,” says Selkirk College Integrated Environmental Planning Program Instructor Peter Holton. “The plans are intended to help Rossland further some of the many goals and initiatives identified some of their long range land use and sustainability plans.”
Under the supervision of Holton, 19 Selkirk College students have explored a diverse range of topics including: affordable housing, wildlife management, landscape ecology, street lighting, wildlife habitat restoration, mind sites management, heritage buildings, urban forestry, urban agriculture (edible landscapes in public spaces), renewable energy, parks, neighbourhood land use planning, non-timber forest products, air quality, skate park design and management, bears interaction management, traffic calming, food security, trail creek, and natural areas (stream zones).
Students Undertake Extensive Process
The involvement of Rossland citizens, relevant government agencies, businesses, and non-governmental organizations has been actively solicited throughout the planning process with direction from the City of Rossland. The March 14 open house is part of that strategy.
“Selkirk’s Integrated Environmental Planning students have a 14-year history of preparing pro-bono plans for a variety of agency and interest group clients throughout the West Kootenay-Boundary,” says Holton. “The expertise we are able to provide has led to many important achievements in communities throughout the region.”
Some examples of the projects that have been worked on in past years include: Brilliant Flats and Terraces Land Use Plans (Regional District Central Kootenay), Cottonwood Creek Protection Plan (Friends of Cottonwood Creek), Rossland Trails and Laneways Plan (City of Rossland), Rossland Sustainability Plan Implementation (City of Rossland), Castlegar OCP Implementation Plan (City of Castlegar), City of Nelson OCP Implementation Plan (City of Nelson), RDCK Integrated Sustainability Support Plans (Regional District Central Kootenay), Kootenay Lake Partnership Stewardship Plans (Kootenay Lake Partnership) and the Village of Slocan OCP Implementation Plans (Village of Slocan).
Rossland’s Strategic Sustainability Plan and Official Community Plans identified numerous areas for future study, research, plan development, and implementation. The purpose of the Life and Environment Action plans is to aid in this process. During the plan preparation processes Selkirk Integrated Environmental Planning students are:
- Compiling existing data on each selected topic in order to define the relevant issues and guide the development of a focus plan.
- Gathering information, input and ideas from the public, agencies, residents, landowners, businesses, and elected and appointed officials.
- Developing a set of planning goals and objectives for each individual topic.
- Researching how other entities and jurisdictions address similar issues throughout North America and document technologies and practices appropriate for Rossland.
- Outlining discrete action steps that can be taken to address issues and identify the parties that would be responsible for each action step.
- Providing order of magnitude cost estimates.
Final plans will be completed in April and presented to the City of Rossland later this spring.