A number of provincial and municipal policies, regulations and legislation guide the ASP process.
CAPITAL REGION BOARD (CRB)
In the last decade the capital region experienced tremendous growth resulting a number of challenges. In 2008, the Government of Alberta recognized these ongoing challenges and responded by creating the Capital Region Board to help with a collaborative approach to regional planning. The Capital Region Board is comprised of of 25 municipalities that work together to create integrated approaches to municipal planning, to identify overall development patterns and to plan for future infrastructure investment.
The Capital Region Growth Plan: Growing Forward was approved by the Government of Alberta on March 11, 2010. The Growth Plan envisions and supports a prosperous economy and an improved quality of life for residents of the Capital Region. The Growth Plan includes four components: a Land Use Plan, an Inter-municipal Transit Network Plan, a Geographic Information Services Plan and a Housing Plan.
The Horse Hill plan area has been identified by the Capital Region Board as a Priority Growth Area because it:
- Includes existing and proposed multi-mode movement corridors, including future alignment for the LRT.
- Is adjacent to proposed major employment areas. (The Edmonton Energy and Technology Park and Alberta’s Industrial Heartland)
- Is within the urban boundaries of the City of Edmonton, with opportunities for both redevelopment and intensification.
- Is located in an area where existing infrastructure and servicing capacity are available and can be logically and efficiently extended.
MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT ACT (MGA)
The Municipal Government Act sets out the legislative requirements for municipalities in Alberta. Under the Act, municipalities with a population of 3500 or more must adopt a Municipal Development Plan (MDP) through bylaw. The MDP in turn, provides direction for how a municipality will grow and develop over the next 10 to 15 years.
The MGA also outlines components of an ASP including: sequence of development, proposed land uses, density of population, proposed and general location of major transportation routes and public utilities.
MUNICIPAL DEVELOPMENT PLAN (MDP)
On May 26, 2010, Edmonton City Council approved Edmonton’s new Municipal Development Plan – The Way We Grow. The MDP provides direction for land use, growth and development for the City of Edmonton over the next 10 years.
The MDP identifies three Urban Growth Areas within the City of Edmonton. They include areas in the southwest, in the southeast and in the northeast (Horse Hill). Council authorized the preparation of ASPs for all three areas, which must follow the Growth Coordination Strategy, the Integrated Infrastructure Management Plan, and the City-Wide Food and Agriculture Strategy. The Horse Hill ASP must also include:
- A vision for the area created with area landowners and other regional stakeholder groups;
- A peri-urban agricultural section in support of the City-Wide Food and Agriculture Strategy; and
- Innovative approaches to food systems, ecological networks, green infrastructure provision, demand reduction strategies and eco-design for future residential, commercial, industrial, business, agricultural and natural uses.
The MDP also requires the Horse Hill ASP take into account the agricultural characteristics of this area. To ensure future development balances the demand for new communities with these characteristics, additional reports, expert opinion and increased community consultation were a part of the ASP process.