Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Development capped until school built

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City council wants to limit development in a new chunk of fast-growing Waverley West until a school is built in the area.

On Tuesday, council's property committee is poised to rezone 141 hectares of agricultural land in Waverley West to make way for up to 4,325 new residential homes and apartment units. Development in older Waverley West neighbourhoods has proceeded ahead of schedule.

But new conditions placed on the development mean residential development will be capped at only 1,050 units -- 750 single-family homes and 300 new apartment units -- until the Pembina Trails School Division builds an early-years to Grade 8 school on provincially owned land in the neighbourhood.

This condition was tagged onto the plan in September by Couns. Justin Swandel (St. Norbert), Dan Vandal (St. Boniface) and Brian Mayes (St. Vital), who sit on council's Riel community committee.

Existing Waverley West residents have complained there are no schools in the area. Pembina Trails School Division initially agreed to build six -- one in each section of the new suburb -- but now plans to build four larger schools.

This, in turn, has prompted complaints from residents and planners who hoped Waverley West would be more pedestrian-friendly.

Meanwhile, city hall is preparing to hit the reset button on a planning framework for the Corydon-Osborne area, three months after councillors abruptly cancelled a previous planning effort.

In July, council's property committee effectively killed a neighbourhood plan that had taken years to develop, following complaints about anti-development bias, levelled by the Corydon Avenue BIZ and several business owners.

On Tuesday, the same committee is expected to approve a new plan that would be created by an independent planning consultant. The goal is to create a planning framework that would strike a balance between the concerns of area residents and businesses, said committee chairman Jeff Browaty (North Kildonan).

Over the past decade, there have been periodic land-use conflicts between owners of restaurants on the Corydon Strip, residents of the adjacent Earl Grey and McMillan neighbourhoods and property developers.

The new plan will attempt to respect the needs of all parties and will incorporate work that has already been conducted in the past, Browaty said.

The city intends to pay for the plan with the help of $100,000 from the planning department budget. Pending committee approval, the city will issue a search for a private consultant as soon as possible.

In other city hall news, a former top adviser to Mayor Sam Katz has taken a new job with the City of Winnipeg.

Sherwood Armbruster, who served as Katz's chief of staff from 2007 to 2009, is returning to the city to work for the city clerk's department, city clerk Richard Kachur announced in an email.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition October 6, 2012 A5

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