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Developer taking stock of feedback following Tillotson open house

Tristar Communities Inc. is expected to produce a 'What We Heard' report with feedback gathered from the public at last week's event.
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The developer of 159 acres in southwest Okotoks is expected to produce a 'What We Heard' report compiling feedback received from residents at an open house Sept. 13.

Dozens of residents flocked to the Foothills Centennial Centre last week for a glance at plans for a 159-acre development in southwest Okotoks.

Developer Tristar Communities Inc. now has to consider everything it heard Sept. 13 before moving to the next step — making final updates to the neighbourhood area structure plan and conducting additional technical studies before ultimately moving for approval of the Tillotson framework

Developer representatives and experts were available for questions during the two-hour open house last Tuesday, where several informational boards were displayed and residents were encouraged to pose questions. 

The full build-out for the community south of Big Rock Trail and west of Westland Street is expected to take place over 10 to 15 years and will occur in six phases. 

According to Tristar Communities, Tillotson will offer a range of housing types, including single-family, semi-detached, row and multi-family. A large environmental preserve, school site, community hub and connection to the existing pathway network have also been outlined in the plan. 

The predicted population for the area ranges from 3,500 to 3,900 people. 

According to the plan, Big Rock Trail will be the primary entrance to the community and connection to the regional road network. Westland Street will be closed in multiple sections to support expansion of the Okotoks Cemetery and discourage cut-through traffic to Highway 2A through Westridge, Tristar said. A secondary connection to Westland Street will be maintained in the southeast corner. 

Big Rock Trail between Southridge Drive and Township Road 203A is the subject of a Functional Transportation Study, which the developer said will identify the most appropriate design and upgrading phases to allow for growth. The transportation study is expected to determine adequate right-of-way width and intersection design. This could include stop-sign or light controlled intersections and one or two-lane roundabouts. 

Approval of the project is currently at stage nine of 12 following the open house. Tristar is required to construct a 'What We Heard Report' outlining feedback received from the public during the event. This document, alongside previous reports, will be filed for the public hearing record. 

The process of approval for the neighbourhood area structure plan is estimated to begin in October and run until December. Following approval will be land use amendment hearings and phased subdivision applications. 

Tillotson is part of the West Okotoks Area Structure Plan (WOASP), which was approved by council in 2020.

That plan, on more than 1,000 acres, will eventually facilitate development that is anticipated to provide housing for approximately 24,000 people and provide more than 2,200 employment opportunities. As a whole, the plan is set to be made up of five neighbourhoods, with two community nodes, three neighbourhood hubs, five school sites, one potential high school and an expansion to the regional pathway network. The estimated build out for the West Okotoks ASP is expected to take more than 60 years. 

The website for the WOASP indicates the Town has identified the need for additional land to accommodate future population growth to 80,000. This identified need, coupled with the Town’s growth mandate, led to the annexation of 1,950 hectares (4,900 acres) of land from Foothills County effective July 1, 2017. 

For more information about the development, visit tillotsonliving.ca.