City of Regina
Saskatchewan CA

RPC-Public Report
RPC18-34

Proposed Coopertown Concept Plan

Information

Department:Office of the City ClerkSponsors:
Category:Not Applicable

Recommendation

 

1.              That the proposed Coopertown Concept Plan, attached as Appendix E and Appendix F of this report, be approved.

 

2.              That this report be forwarded to the July 30, 2018 meeting of City Council for approval.

 

Report Body

g Number

CONCLUSION

 

The proposed Coopertown Concept Plan (Concept Plan) provides a framework for establishing a new neighbourhood in the northwest part of Regina that will accommodate approximately 3,450 people, as well as a broad array of residential types and densities, such as parks and open space and a mixed-use hub. The proposed population, phasing, land-use strategy and neighbourhood design conforms with the City of Regina (City) requirements, including Design Regina: The Official Community Plan Bylaw No. 2013-48 (OCP) and the Coopertown Neighbourhood Plan.

 

Preparation of the Concept Plan has included a review and confirmation of the site conditions, context and proposed servicing solutions. The process has involved public and stakeholder engagement, including an open house and regional consultation. For these reasons and the above noted, City Administration recommends approval of the Concept Plan.

 

BACKGROUND

 

The lands (Neighbourhood or Plan Area) subject to the Concept Plan are 70 hectares in size and are situated in the northwest part of Regina, immediately west of Courtney Street and north of 9th Avenue North (Appendix A). The Plan Area was incorporated into the city through a boundary alteration in the 1970s and has remained undeveloped, excepting its use for agricultural crop production. The former OCP (Regina Development Plan) identified the subject property as an area intended to accommodate the 300,000-population growth target at that time and this designation was carried forward into the new OCP, which was adopted by City Council in 2013.

 

The Plan Area is surrounded by cultivated farmland to the west and north; the Sherwood/ McCarthy Neighbourhood is located to the east, separated by Courtney Street and the Prairie View Neighbourhood is located to the south, separated by 9th Avenue North (Appendix B). The north boundary of the Plan Area is bound by a major hydrocarbon pipeline corridor that accommodates several pipelines, which convey an array of petroleum products.

 

The Plan Area represents one of two development areas in the northwest part of Regina that has been assigned a Phase I designation through the policies of the OCP. Rosewood Park is the other Phase I area and is located approximately one kilometre north of the Plan Area and was subject to concept plan approval in December of 2017.

 

In addition to the OCP, the Plan Area is also subject to the policies of the Coopertown Neighbourhood Plan, which applies to all lands between the Regina Bypass (west segment) and Courtney Street and between Armour Road and 9th Avenue North (Appendix C). The Coopertown Neighbourhood Plan establishes broad policy direction for growth, development and servicing and was approved by City Council on April 23, 2017.

 

Many factors have influenced the review process associated with the Concept Plan, including the design of the Regina Bypass, which has had implications for intersection spacing and design along 9th Avenue North, identification of design/footprint for potential future interchanges at Courtney Street and 9th Avenue North, identification of servicing solutions; preparation and approval of the Coopertown Neighbourhood Plan and public and stakeholder engagement.

 

DISCUSSION

 

Land-Use & Design

 

The Concept Plan supports the development of a new neighbourhood that is intended to include a mix of residential types, a variety of park spaces, as well as a mixed-use hub (Flex Area). The population estimate associated with the proposed residential mix is approximately 3,450 people and the associated density equates to approximately 54 people per hectare (Table 1).

 

The proposed Flex Area has the potential to accommodate up to 13,500m2 (145,000ft2) of commercial floor area, which would allow for one large anchor tenant in addition to several other small-medium sized commercial buildings; however, notwithstanding land area, the land-use within the proposed mixed-use hub would be limited by the Coopertown Neighbourhood Plan, which limits commercial land-use, in this context, to “local commercial” uses only.

 

 

Table 1 – Concept Plan Land-Use Summary

Residential

·         Population Estimate:                         3,450

·         Dwelling Unit Estimate:                   1,500

·         Dwelling Units by Type:                  low density:             29.0%

                                                          medium density:      26.0%                   

                                                          high density:            45.0%

·         Population Density:                          54 persons per hectare.

Commercial

·         Potential for approximately 13,500m2 (145,000ft2) of commercial floor area in Flex Area 1 (based on a 30 per cent site coverage scenario).

·         Potential for ground-floor commercial in mixed-use buildings in Flex Area 2.

Open Space/ Recreation

·                     One neighbourhood-level park to accommodate one multi-use athletic field and passive recreational elements, etc.

·                     Two smaller (parks to accommodate passive recreation, play areas, etc.

Civic Uses

·                     No requirement of school identified.

·                     No requirement for emergency service facilities identified.

 

The neighbourhood design is based on a modified grid block/street pattern, which allows for a high-level of interconnectivity within and between the Neighbourhood and future adjacent neighbourhoods. A core feature of the proposed Neighbourhood is a community focal area situated along the Rink Avenue corridor, which will support commercial, higher density residential and a neighbourhood-level park. The Neighbourhood design incorporates unique features, including a one-way couplet (street) system that bounds the central neighbourhood park, roundabouts located at key intersections and homes fronting onto park space.

In accordance with the Coopertown Neighbourhood Plan, the Neighbourhood is designated as a Neighbourhood Area. The Neighbourhood Area designation allows for a variety of residential types and densities, parks, recreational and institutional uses and commercial opportunities. The Concept Plan meets the requirements of the Coopertown Neighbourhood Plan and conforms with the requirements of the OCP respecting complete neighbourhoods, active transportation, minimum population densities and housing diversity.

 

Transportation Servicing

 

The Plan Area abuts two roadways that are identified in accordance with the Transportation Master Plan (TMP) for major upgrades and expansion: Courtney Street and 9th Avenue North. Courtney Street flanks the east side of the Plan Area and will serve as the main gateway. The intent is to transition Courtney Street from its current state as a two-lane rural roadway to a four to six lane urban arterial road. As per the Coopertown Neighbourhood Plan, the construction of Courtney Street will be the responsibility of the affected developers. Design and construction will occur incrementally through servicing agreements entered into between the City and developers associated with the subdivision and development of adjacent lands within the Neighbourhood Area, or as warranted by a transportation impact analysis.

 

In addition, 9th Avenue North flanks the south side of the Plan Area and is intended to form part of the Ring Road, connecting to the Regina Bypass. Currently, 9th Avenue North, west of Courtney Street, is a high speed two-lane road, but will transition to a divided expressway and then ultimately to a freeway classification. As a result, no direct access to 9th Avenue North/Ring Road will be allowed, except through strategically located intersections and future interchanges. Through a Functional Design Study carried out in 2017-2018, it was determined that Fairway Road and Courtney Street will serve as the connecting points to 9th Avenue North/Ring Road and that land for the future interchanges is required to be reserved at these locations. The Concept Plan recognizes the plan for 9th Avenue North/Ring Road by providing sufficient land for right-of-way expansion and construction of future interchanges at Fairway Road and Courtney Street.

 

The Neighbourhood will be served by a combination of collector and local streets that provide connections internally and to future development outside of the Plan Area. The collector streets will accommodate active transportation through the inclusion of multi-use pathways and will also serve as the primary transit routes. Transit service will be phased-in as warranted by demand and in accordance with the City’s budget approval process. In the long-term, express transit service is identified to be extended to the Coopertown area via Rochdale Boulevard. The Neighbourhood would connect to this system through the transit and multi-use pathway systems.

 

The Concept Plan includes transportation design elements that are unique to the City within the context of new neighbourhoods: roundabouts and a one-way couplet street design. Two roundabouts are proposed for two of the key intersections, which are intended to provide an alternative traffic management solution, as well as a landscaping feature. Roundabouts allow traffic to negotiate through intersections through a circular design that is more free-flow than conventional intersections and do not require the need for traffic signals. Roundabouts are commonly used in many Canadian cities and are recognized within industry standards as a safe and effective means of accommodating vehicular and pedestrian movement.

 

The proposed one-way couplet represents an alternative collector roadway design that separates bi-directional traffic flow into two one-way streets. In this instance, Rink Avenue, within the Neighbourhood, starts off as a two-way collector road and then branches off into two one-way streets that are separated by a neighbourhood park and residential blocks. The intent is that the one-way couplet will converge back to a standard two-way collector road west of Fairway Road. The road network final configuration, as shown in the Concept Plan, has been reviewed by City Administration in accordance with City standards and national standards for design. Fire and Protective Services also reviewed the road network and indicated that they have no issues from a response-time perspective.

 

Wastewater Servicing

 

In accordance with the Wastewater Strategy, wastewater will flow by gravity to a proposed new pump station and will then be pumped through a force-main, which will connect to the McCarthy force-main at a point between the McCarthy Boulevard Pump Station and the City’s Wastewater Treatment Plant. As this proposed new system will bypass existing trunk lines and the McCarthy Boulevard Pump Station, there will be no impacts on the service levels of existing neighbourhoods. Further, there may be opportunities in the future to route wastewater from existing neighbourhoods to this new pump station, thus improving service levels for some existing neighbourhoods (e.g. portions of Mapleridge and Westhill).

 

The construction and land acquisition associated with the proposed new pump station is the responsibility of the Developer; however, funding to construct the new pump station may be shared by any other benefitting developers, or other parties benefitting from wastewater servicing provided by the new pump station in accordance with the applicable City policies.

 

Storm Water Servicing

 

In accordance with the storm water strategy, storm water will flow by gravity to the existing, adjacent storm sewer system at Fairway Road. The internal storm water system will include one new detention facility, which is to be located in the proposed neighbourhood-level park and will temporarily detain storm water before releasing it to the storm sewer system at a controlled rate. The City has analyzed the proposed strategy and has concluded that the existing downstream infrastructure has the capacity to manage storm water from the Neighbourhood. Although the Coopertown Neighbourhood Plan contemplates the construction of a new linear storm water facility, which will traverse the Coopertown Neighbourhood Plan area from north to south, this facility is not required to accommodate the storm water from this initial development phase, as the existing storm water sewers are deemed to be sufficient.

 

Water Servicing

 

In accordance with the water servicing strategy, the water system will connect to the existing adjacent network in the City’s primary pressure zone. As the Neighbourhood will connect to the City’s primary pressure zone, which is a system that is nearing capacity limits, the proposed strategy was assessed from the perspective of level-of-service within the Neighbourhood, as well as implications for the broader service area.

 

The assessment assumed full build-out of the Neighbourhood and the need to ensure sufficient pressure for fire fighting and domestic consumption. Although this development will place additional demands upon the capacity of the primary pressure zone, the City is undertaking a pre-design study to deliver an eastern pressure solution, which following activation, will support the primary pressure zone and ensure service levels will be maintained at an acceptable level. It is anticipated construction of the necessary infrastructure to deliver the eastern pressure solution will begin in 2021.

 

Parks and Open Space

 

In accordance with the open space strategy of the Concept Plan, the Neighbourhood will include one neighbourhood-level park, two smaller pocket parks and a municipal buffer system. The proposed neighbourhood-level park is intended to accommodate a multi-use athletic field, sports court and play area, while the two pocket parks are intended to accommodate passive recreation areas and play areas. All residential lots will be within 800 metres of a neighbourhood-level park, which is in accordance with the City’s Open Space Management Strategy (OSMS) and most of the residential lots will be within 400 metres of a park.

 

As per the Coopertown Neighbourhood Plan, a portion of the municipal reserve dedication will be directed towards the acquisition of a zone-level park, which will be developed as part of a future development phase and will serve as a large-scale amenity feature for the broader Coopertown area. The portion of municipal reserve dedication to be directed towards the zone-level park will be administered by the City through the servicing agreement process as development of the Neighbourhood proceeds, typically through a deferral of dedicated lands, but alternatively through cash-in-lieu of municipal reserve dedication payment.

 

Pipeline Proximity

 

The north boundary of the Plan Area is flanked by a hydrocarbon pipeline corridor that accommodates several pipelines that convey various petroleum products. To assess the potential implications associated with this corridor, the Developer was required to provide a risk analysis prepared by a qualified professional. This analysis concluded that residential development, excepting low-medium density “ground-oriented” dwellings and institutional uses (e.g. schools), should not be allowed within 120 metres of the corridor (easement) boundary. The Concept Plan responds to this recommendation by limiting adjacent development to low density residential and by also locating an 18-metre-wide street along the south boundary of the corridor, which will provide a buffer separation and will also allow access for maintenance and emergency vehicles. City Administration concludes that the Coopertown Concept Plan effectively addresses the recommendations of the risk analysis.

 

RECOMMENDATION IMPLICATIONS

 

Financial Implications

 

The Developer will be expected to pay for the construction of all infrastructure that specifically applies to and benefits the Neighbourhood, while elements of the required infrastructure that benefit other developers will be subject to cost sharing. Any infrastructure items eligible for Servicing Agreement Fee funding shall be in accordance with the provisions outlined in the City Council Report CM15-14 of December 14, 2015. Further, the Developer will be expected to maintain and operate any interim infrastructure, if applicable.

The municipal infrastructure that is built and funded by the Developer will become the City’s responsibility to operate and maintain through future budgets. 

 

Environmental Implications

 

As part of the review process, the Plan Area was assessed by qualified professionals from the perspective of environmental and geotechnical conditions. The analysis undertaken indicates that there are no known sources of contamination or significant hazards. Further, the aquifer sensitivity is characterized as low, the soil conditions are deemed to be suitable for the proposed use of land and the proposed land-uses are expected to be relatively benign from a nuisance or contamination perspective. The potential risk associated with the existing hydrocarbon pipeline corridor was assessed and a solution to support safety was incorporated into the Concept Plan.

 

Strategic Implications

 

The proposed Concept Plan supports and/or is in conformity with the following requirements/ objectives of the OCP – Part A:

 

·            Growth Plan and Phasing: Section E, Goal 5:

The Neighbourhood is identified as a Phase I “New Neighbourhood”. This designation allows development to proceed immediately, subject to the requisite approvals. Land supply associated with new Neighbourhood areas are intended to accommodate new growth associated with the City’s 300,000 population growth target.

 

·            Population Density: Section C, Goal 4:

Development within areas identified as New Neighbourhood must achieve a population density of at least 50 people per hectare (pph). The Concept Plan supports a density of approximately 54 pph; therefore, exceeds minimum density requirements.

 

·            Complete Neighbourhoods: Section D5, Goal 1:

As an identified New Neighbourhood, the Concept Plan must conform with the policies and guidelines associated with “Complete Neighbourhoods”. The Concept Plan meets the requirements by supporting a spectrum of residential densities, opportunities for recreation and leisure, opportunities for supporting daily lifestyle requirements, active (e.g. walking and cycling) and transit-oriented mobility.

 

·            Comprehensive Planning: Section E, Goal 6:

The Concept Plan provides a comprehensive solution for managing future land-use and servicing within the Neighbourhood and a framework for carrying forward to a more detailed level, the policies and guidelines associated with the OCP.

 

The proposed Concept Plan supports and/or is in conformity with the following requirements/ objectives of the TMP:

 

·            Connectivity: Direction 5, Policy 5.4

The Concept Plan supports a grid network, which provides a high level of interconnectivity.


 

·            Active Transportation: Direction 4, Policy 4.1

              The Concept Plan supports active transportation through the grid street design, which provides a high level of interconnectivity and through the requirement of multi-use pathways within collector street rights-of-way.

 

Other Implications

 

None with respect to this report.

 

Accessibility Implications

 

Paratransit service will be provided to the Neighbourhood as required.  In accordance with the OSMS, there must be accessible elements in every new playground in the city.

 

COMMUNICATIONS

 

Consultation has included engagement with affected landowners, adjacent residents, public and external stakeholders (e.g. various ministries of the Government of Saskatchewan; Rural Municipality of Sherwood No. 159 [RM]; school authorities; community associations; utility providers, RQHR, etc.). The following is a summary of the engagement undertaken:

 

Public Engagement

 

Public engagement has included the following communication and results:

 

·         Distribution of information to landowners and community associations through mail.

·         Open house event held on November 28, 2017, which drew approximately 40 people.

·         Posting of draft Concept Plan and open house material on the City’s website.

·         Posting of notification sign adjacent to Plan Area boundary.

·         Notification of Regina Planning Committee meeting date through newspaper ad.

 

Through the open house, the City received feedback from the public, which included recommendations for revising specific elements of the Concept Plan. A summary of the open house feedback is attached as Appendix D. As a result of the open house, the Developer revised the Concept Plan to address key concerns.

 

Stakeholder Engagement

 

Key considerations resulting from external engagement include the following:

 

·         Through a meeting with the Ministry of Highways and Infrastructure to discuss implications associated with 9th Avenue North intersection spacing and how this might impact the Regina Bypass interchange, it was determined that there are no issues.

·         School authorities were engaged but did not indicate the need for a school.

·         Discussions with the RM occurred. No issues have been brought forward by the RM.

 

DELEGATED AUTHORITY

 

City Council’s approval is required pursuant to subsection 44(4) of the Planning and Development Act, 2007.

 

Respectfully submitted,

Respectfully submitted,

Shauna Bzdel, Director

Planning

Diana Hawryluk, Executive Director

City Planning & Development

 

 

Prepared by: Jeremy Fenton, Senior Planner