For Sale signs may soon be going up on the north portion of the Squamish Easter Seals Camp.
Since the 1980s, the 32-acre property has hosted summer camps for children with physical, cognitive and mental disabilities. That's not going to change, said Stephen Miller, British Columbia Lions Society for Children with Disabilities president.
The northern end of the lot holds a split zoning, with approximately half the lot marked as Assembly District and the rest under Rural Residential. The society is seeking to put the whole 10-acre parcel into the Rural Residential pool, making way for the sale of the land.
Rural Residential zoning allows for one house to be built on a 10-acre lot, Miller said. He hopes to see similar construction to the house, which currently stands south of the camp.
"It is our goal to allow one house on that 10 acres," Miller told the handful of people that turned up for a public information meeting on Thursday, Jan. 17. "It is the lowest impact we could possible do with that (piece of property)."
The area is all a part of an Agriculture Land Reserve (ARL). As such, it would be virtually impossible to get clearance to portion the property into smaller development lots, District of Squamish planner Sabina Foofat said.
"We can be quite confident that the ARL are not going to allow subdivision," she said.
Some residents at the meeting questioned the wisdom of taking land out of the Assembly District zoning, a zoning which allows for developments such as ambulance stations, hospitals, community activity centres and schools. Certain commercial zoning also allows for educational facilities, district director of planning Chris Bishop told The Chief.
"We have a variety of locations in the district that have that (Assembly District) zoning," he added.
Approximately 350 children attend Squamish's summer camp annually, Miller said. It costs the Lions society approximately $2,400 per child to run the program, the Squamish resident said. Money from the land sale will go toward supporting the camp's services and infrastructure, Miller said.
"I love this camp," he said.
District staff expect to hold a public hearing on the re-zoning in mid-February. If council passes the proposal, Foofat said it could be in place by early March.