County of Grande Prairie Reeve Leanne Beaupre says after six years of development, the Northwest Clairmont Area Structure Plan has been given the green light to move forward, paving the way for potential growth in the hamlet.
The plan covers approximately 3,300 acres sitting just north of Highway 43, sandwiched between Clairmont Lake to the west, Township Road 730 to the north, and the hamlet boundary to the west.
Beaupre says they’ve been working closely with Alberta Transportation on the project, as they can decide what can and can’t be developed along the provincial highway and numbered highway corridors.
“We want to make sure we aren’t planning for anything that we are going to have some issues down the road for the developer,” she adds.
“If you decide down in the future that road needs to be expanded to say a four-lane or major intersection, it can be difficult to work with someone who has a large business or investment in that area,” she adds.
Beaupre says the experience with other area development plans has given county staff and councillors a better understanding of the challenges other stakeholders may face and hopes it helped in getting the document over the finish line.
“It may have taken a long time to get there but there has been a lot of good work put into it,” she says.
“This is a really good step in the right direction, it gives us some statutory plans to now move forward with development as it becomes available.”
Beaupre adds because the land is vacant it makes it a lot easier to plan, and while it doesn’t make it impossible to plan around existing development, it’s helpful trying to find that buffer between the two so there are no competing interests.
“We want to see complimenting businesses that will really create economic diversity,” she adds.
You can find the full Northwest Clairmont Area Structure Plan on the County of Grande Prairie website.