Lee Creek plan proceeds

Lagoon has been reopened to Shuswap Lake which will allow fish access in and out of the lake. - Photo contributed
Lagoon has been reopened to Shuswap Lake which will allow fish access in and out of the lake.
— image credit: Photo contributed

A seasonal campground on the foreshore in Lee Creek will go to public hearing sometime this summer.

Columbia Shuswap Regional District directors gave unanimous approval to moving the proposal forward.

“This is so different from West Beach; it’s like night and day,” says CSRD senior planner Dan Passmore, referring to the former 218-unit resort and marina project developer Mike Rink had planned for the site. “They are proposing to keep the existing campground a-la Cottonwoods (original campground).”

New owner Greg Darroch asked for a re-designation of the site from ‘waterfront residential’ to ‘secondary settlement area – commercial,’ and a rezoning from commercial 1 to comprehensive development.

This will allow him to redevelop and expand the existing campground area and will permit subdivision of its 184 recreational vehicle spaces into bare-land strata lots.

The owners would be permitted to rent out their spots.

“Subdividing the ownership is the key,” says Passmore. “The zoning permits them to use their own lot and to put it into a rental pool for casual visitors.”

Also important, says Passmore, is that only recreational vehicles are permitted – no semi-permanent or park models.

“The zone allows for one RV per lot,” he says. “We’re not restricting the number of tents.”

Storage sheds would also be permitted but only for storage. No sleeping accommodations will be permitted in the sheds.

“The owners would also be allowed to build decks that are not attached to their RVs – more like patio areas,” adds Passmore.

He notes the 184 sites has changed from the original application and could easily change again if the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure has issues with access permits.

Passmore says the development proposal presented to the CSRD board on June 19 raised a few questions, including dedication of a park area and water-quality monitoring.

“The park area will not be dedicated to CSRD; it is shown in the zoning bylaw as open space and that would ensure no development would occur on that area,” he said, noting the environment would be protected. “It also could be a public park, or not, depending on the CSRD Parks and whether they want to see it as a park.”

Passmore says water monitoring in Shuswap Lake will be addressed through the Ministry of Environment’s permitting process.

The ministry assumes responsibility for water quality.

“They certainly seemed OK with the answers given,” said Passmore of the board’s reaction. “They approved second reading and delegation of a public hearing sometime in the summer.”

Darroch calls his proposal “almost a downsizing,” and hopes the public will respond favourably at the public hearing which will be held in the Scotch Creek Firehall.

“It is going to be the Five Star Resort for family camping, and why I am saying that?” he asks, pointing out amenities such as boating, kayaking, canoeing, hiking, golfing and more are available close to the campground.

On the environmental side, Darroch received Fisheries approval to open up a former closed lagoon.

“So the lagoon is now part of Shuswap Lake and open to the fish,” he said. “And it has a 110-foot opening, it’s not a little access.”

Darroch stresses the family campground will be seasonal – open only from the May long weekend to Thanksgiving.


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