Councillors in Strathcona County vote to adopt Bremner area concept plan

Some Strathcona County residents concerned by Bremner development
WATCH ABOVE: (From Sept. 16, 2019) Some residents of Strathcona County say they have concerns after county officials moved a step closer to allowing farmland near Sherwood Park to be developed. Sarah Komadina explains.

A controversial plan to develop land in the Sherwood Park area is moving forward.

On Tuesday, Strathcona County Council voted to adopt the Bremner and Local Employment Area Concept Plan for an area just east of Highway 21 and north of Highway 16.

Officials said the move provides them with a general plan to help guide area structure plans undertaken by developers.

They said it could take 50 years for the growth area to reach full build-out.

READ MORE: Farmers say Strathcona County ‘completely upside down’ in land decision

Watch below: (From June 23, 2017) As more people move into Edmonton and surrounding communities, councils have to decide where to grow. Strathcona County wants to grow north. But as Tom Vernon explains, that has some landowners outside the city feeling frozen out.

Edmonton-area landowners feel frozen out from potential development
Edmonton-area landowners feel frozen out from potential development

Further details like deciding on infrastructure and development costs and timing of development still need to be worked out.

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In 2017, Strathcona County’s mayor at the time, Roxanne Carr, said she was expecting an additional 55,000 people would need to be “absorbed in Strathcona County alone” and that “we must move on as a municipality” despite some people objecting to developing the agricultural land.

Carr said at the time that the county moved to try to protect prime farmland in 2015 but that democracy beat out her efforts to protect Bremner.

The area concept plan was approved by the Edmonton Metropolitan Region Board in July.

It was not clear on Friday when work to develop Bremner would begin.

Global News tried to get comment from the county late Friday afternoon but was told nobody would be available to speak until Monday.

–With files from Global News’ Kendra Slugoski