Sylvan Lake’s waterfront area is on its way to becoming a hub of year-round activity with the adoption of the Sustainable Waterfront Area Redevelopment Plan (SWARP).
For more than a year, residents have worked with the Town of Sylvan Lake to develop a plan that “guides growth and development” over the next 20 years within the waterfront area.
Residents gave their input through various ReIMAGINE Sylvan questionnaires, surveys and workshops.
The SWARP Project, which publicly began during Winterfest in 2017, has the goal of making the lakefront area the “vibrant heart” of town by 2038.
Through the consultations and residents feedback sessions, it was found a key vision for the area is to have year-round activity to bring people to the area.
“ReImagine Sylvan is the direct product of a collaborative, community engagement process using multiple approaches to connect with our community,” said Mayor Sean McIntyre in a press release.
As a “major component to Sylvan Lake’s identity,” the lake has been identified as a natural and recreational resource.
In this regard, many residents felt it was important to protect the lake and to strengthen stewardship.
“Together we’ve built an efficient and thoughtful plan for the future of our waterfront,” McIntyre said.
Ken Kalirai, director of planning and development, says there will be some immediate actions with the approval and adoption of SWARP.
With SWARP in place the Waterfront Direct Control District will be eliminated, according to Kalirai.
“Removal of such a District creates more certainty for the development community – an important step in facilitating new development in the Waterfront,” Kalirai said.
Direct Control Districts in Sylvan Lake are areas where the decisions on development permits are made by Town Council.
SWARP will also implement other short, medium and long-term actions and goals to move the plan forward.
Barrier-free public access to the waterfront area, is one important factor the plan hopes to implant in regards to parks and open spaces.
Along with barrier-free access, SWARP will also preserve views to the lake, increase trails and expand recreational use for year-round enjoyment.
The SWARP area stretches from 60 Street along the golf course all the way down Lakeshore Drive down to 33 Street by the round-about.
The full plan for the Sustainable Waterfront Area Redevelopment Plan can be found online at www.sylvanlake.ca.
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