Montane

WELCOME

On May 3rd, 2022, Parastone Developments Ltd. hosted a Public Open House at the Fernie Senior Drop-In Centre. This event was the start of a larger effort to update the vision and plan for future development at MONTANE. The following information was presented to those who were able to attend and is presented here for those who were not able to attend the Open House in person.

Please provide your feedback.

A Most Unique Community

In the Elk River Valley and surrounded by snowcapped mountains, Fernie sits at the confluence of Coal Creek and the Elk River, nestled in the heart of the Kootenays. Its small town character and charm has endured in large part due to its tightly knit community.

Beyond the postcard-perfect mountain town main street, Fernie offers all of the amenities and services of a regional centre, including the Elk Valley Hospital, the College of the Rockies, the Arts Station, an aquatic centre and skate park, as well as K-12 schools.

And while Fernie is synonymous with big mountain recreation, arts and culture, and a down-to-earth, active lifestyle, Fernie maintains itself with close ties to the resource sector: its identity is decidedly more fiercely independent than many of its neighbours.

It is within this context that we contemplate MONTANE’s place as a growing neighbourhood

The Purpose of Today’s Event

  • to share the planning vision and principles for current and future development at MONTANE
  • to explore the process of neighbourhood planning and placemaking
  • to hear from and share ideas with community members in an in-person, open house format

Getting to Know You

Before we get started, please let us know where you live. Place a sticky dot on your neighbourhood or home. If your home is not on the map, please write it on a sticky and place it in the rectangle below.

PROJECT VISION

The Vision for MONTANE guides current and future development planning and neighbourhood design.

A Guiding Our Future

Planning and development at MONTANE is guided by our project vision:

MONTANE provides opportunities for deep community connection and active living. We welcome you to visit. And we invite you to fall in love with where – and how – we live.

Our collective efforts to build on this vision are aligned by our team’s core values, including:

Love for Active Living

preferring movement and health, getting out, getting dirty

Connection to Community

encouraging human interaction and quality time spent with neighbours, friends and family

Reducing Our Footprint

living in a way – and in a place – that demonstrates quality over quantity, and feels more connected to nature

MONTANE is brought to you by Parastone Developments: a landmark real estate development and construction company, premised on careful planning, solid professional services and a commitment to enhance land through the creation of signature communities.

DESIGN PRINCIPLES

The Vision for MONTANE is guided by the following set of design principles, intended to inspire the planning and development of all neighbourhood improvements.d future development planning and neighbourhood design.

Fernie First.

The vision for neighbourhood design comes from a recognition and respect for the role MONTANE plays as part of the larger Fernie community.

The development of the MONTANE masterplan vision was guided by the site’s physical and recreational connections to Fernie’s historic core… and a deep commitment to direct economic, social and environmental investment in and for the community.

Good Living in the Great Outdoors.

The character of development of MONTANE is reflective of its natural setting and deliberate connections made between outdoor recreation, community and wellbeing.

Within individual neighbourhoods, clusters of homes frame smaller pocket parks and greenways and the MONTANE trail plan provides direct pedestrian/bike connections within 100m of every home. It is this visible articulation of “nature at your door” that defines the generosity and expansiveness of the MONTANE neighbourhood.

Big Views & Sun.

Neighbourhood streets and greenways are designed – and aligned – to capitalize on the signature views of Mt. Hosmer, the Three Sisters and the Cedar Valley.

Individual homesites will be designed to optimize views of the spectacular panoramic mountain scenery. Home designs will maximize opportunities presented by the site’s sun exposure.

Individual Character + Collective Spirit.

Buildings exhibit a diverse range of expressions within a contemporary palette of forms, materials, and colours. Creativity is encouraged.

Physical siting and design prioritizes the quality of public spaces: streets and sidewalks tour between pocket neighbourhoods; homes frame community greens oriented to views; a range of amenities – from trails to gardens – invite opportunities for community interaction.

Diversity of Homes and Habitats.

A spectrum of housing choices are presented within a range of pocket neighbourhoods, connected by a common thread of outdoor living and recreational opportunities.

A variety of ground-oriented home types supports mixed-age neighbourhoods and socio-economic diversity.

Connected to Place.

Neighbourhood design and home siting responds to variations in landform, paying special attention to prominent views, landmarks and natural features.

“Dark Sky” lighting guidelines will retain the magic of the night sky. Materials and colours at MONTANE will be inspired by and complimentary of the local landscape. Natural and durable materials will be utilized in buildings and landscape features at MONTANE.

CONCEPT PLAN

The concept plan for MONTANE is informed by the experience of the landscape – a series of “outdoor rooms” defined by natural features – and imagines a more complete, walkable neighbourhood.

Pocket-Neighbourhood Design

Within MONTANE North, a collection of distinct “pocket neighbourhoods” are designed to respond to defining landscape features, and include:

  1. VALLEY COMMONS. This extensive open space – defined by the Coal Creek floodplain – is envisioned as a pedestrian-oriented meeting place and includes the MONTANE barn and community farm, outdoor recreational staging areas and opportunities for special events programming.

  2. TERRACES. Situated on the elevated benches south of the Valley Commons, the Terraces neighbourhood extends from the entry along the MONTANE Parkway to Brewery Creek crossing and includes residential development built to date.

  3. CREEKSIDE. Framed by the Coal Creek and Brewery Creek corridors, the Creekside neighbourhood occupies a single, gently sloping, west-facing terrace.

  4. HILLTOP. Perched atop the crest of the Parkway, the Hilltop neighbourhood gains new aspect in the sunny, south-facing slopes, commanding dramatic views north, west and south from above Cokato Road.

  5. CASTLE RIDGE. Stretching to the south above the Cokato Valley, Castle Ridge is formed by a series of undulating, west- facing terraces accessed from Castle Mountain Road.

POLICY UPDATE

The City of Fernie’s Official Community Plan and Zoning Bylaws set land use designations and regulate current and future development within the City. Parastone seeks to apply for updates to existing policy to better align with the current vision.ble neighbourhood.

City Policies and Guidelines

Official Community Plan (Bylaw No. 2231, 2014)

The Official Community Plan “ensures that plans, actions and decisions from different city departments (e.g., leisure services, engineering, planning) are aligned and working towards a common direction – a vital, thriving and sustainable Fernie we all want to call home.”

The OCP currently identifies MONTANE within the Castle Mountain planning area and describes lands zoned for “a mix of low, medium and high-density residential land uses, parks and natural open space.” Policies support a mix of uses and a range of housing options, consideration of visual impacts of development, pedestrian connectivity and integration with existing trail networks.

MONTANE is also designated within the Coal Creek Development Area with policies that reflect an 18-hole golf course resort masterplan.

Zoning Bylaw No. 1750

Uses are regulated by a “Comprehensive Development” zone (CD-1) which stipulates permitted uses within specific sub-zones including: single detached and multi- unit residential, golf course & resort commercial uses including accommodations, retail and miscellaneous other supporting services.

Key Points of Evolution

The vision for MONTANE reflects a clear evolution from the 2002 resort golf course resort plan (“Coal Creek Golf Resort” shown at left) in favour of a more complete neighbourhood design that better fits the land and community needs. Key points of evolution include:

MONTANE TRAIL NETWORK (recreational amenity)

The Coal Creek concept occupied the gentlest areas of the site and excluded public recreational access to the vast majority of recreational lands (e.g. golf course).

The proposed concept continues the expansion and enhancement of the MONTANE trail network to connect community destinations (e.g. downtown) with residential neighbourhoods, small pocket parks and other open space landmarks within and beyond the property.

A RANGE OF HOUSING TYPES

The Coal Creek concept prioritized second home resort accommodations associated with the golf resort program.

The proposed concept proposes a range of housing from single family homes and duplexes to townhomes to multi-unit condo & apartment buildings, targeting a diverse spectrum of housing and affordability options.

NEIGHBOURHOOD HUB (commercial / civic services)

The Coal Creek concept prioritized the golf resort program to drive local commercial activity and opportunity.

The proposed concept explores neighbourhood-scale and community-oriented commercial services on the north side of MONTANE Parkway, designed to also support trailhead and staging needs for recreational programs (e.g. trail network); a school site is proposed on the south side of the Parkway.

MONTANE FARM (community heart)

The Coal Creek concept proposed an 18-hole golf course and clubhouse as the programmatic anchor of the neighbourhood.

The proposed concept continues to celebrate the MONTANE Barn as the centrepiece of a growing community farm program that engages both residents and visitors in the social activity of the neighbourhood.

ACTIVITIES & AMENITIES

Outdoor living is central to the planning and design vision for MONTANE. With extensive active lifestyle activities and amenities, planning and design will continue to explore opportunities for neighbourhood improvements

What activities do you most enjoy? What’s missing?

TRAILS & PATHWAYS

The vision seeks to enhance and expand trails. A network of pathways will link residential streets with gathering areas and the neighborhood hub …while extending to community trail networks and lands beyond.

WAYFINDING SIGNAGE, INTERPRETATION & ART

Signage will be used throughout MONTANE to help residents and visitors easily navigate the network of trails, pathways. Opportunities for interpretive signage – highlighting environmental and/or cultural features – and art installation will also be explored within future development.

COMMUNITY GATHERING

Within the overall design of pocket neighbourhoods and recreational trail networks at MONTANE, an emphasis will be placed on smaller gathering spaces that serve as places for residents and visitors to connect and recreate together.

NATURE PLAY AREAS

Interactive play areas will bring kids and adults into nature through natural play structures that integrate into the landscape.

ACTIVITIES & AMENITIES

Outdoor living is central to the planning and design vision for MONTANE. With extensive active lifestyle activities and amenities, planning and design will continue to explore opportunities for neighbourhood improvements

A Mix of Supporting Services

While located just a stone’s throw from the heart of downtown Fernie, there is an opportunity to co-locate a mix of uses within the MONTANE neighbourhood in service of greater walkability and livability. Planning for a “neighbourhood hub” requires careful consideration of types of uses and ideal locations:

IDENTIFY BEST SITES

Building on past planning, current policy and best practices in walkable neighbourhood design, the concept plan recognizes the Neighbourhood Hub as the centre of energy and signature entrance experience to MONTANE.

CURATE THE RIGHT MIX

Careful consideration of the right mix of services and the right size/scale of operations emphasizes quality of experience within the Neighbourhood Hub.

PRESERVE THE OPPORTUNITY

Site planning delineates and designates space for detailed design related to access, servicing, development and operation.

INTEGRATE WITHIN NEIGHBOURHOOD DESIGN

Pedestrian connections and relationships between the Neighbourhood Hub, residential neighbourhoods and the larger open space network (parks and trails) celebrates the sense of place.

Most importantly, successful implementation requires addressing operational/tenant needs, and timing/ phasing of development to ensure viability of services.

What’s best suited?
What’s missing?

ACTIVITIES & AMENITIES

Outdoor living is central to the planning and design vision for MONTANE. With extensive active lifestyle activities and amenities, planning and design will continue to explore opportunities for neighbourhood improvements

Range of Housing Types

Anticipating a balanced offering of single-unit, duplex and multi-unit dwellings, specific types and mixes will be determined prior to individual development phases. Where feasible, pocket neighbourhood designs will accommodate a mix of types and tenures.

KEEPING WITH LOCAL CHARACTER

Residential development will emphasize a strong connection to the outdoors with ground-oriented forms.

INCREASING DIVERSITY AND AFFORDABILITY

Mixed neighbourhoods will include a range of housing types and sizes. Diversification of residential offerings will provide for more affordable ownership and/or rental housing.

LOW DENSITY RESIDENTIAL

A range of single family lot types are proposed: from larger, more generous lot sizes to accommodate and preserve complex terrain, to more compact lots and duplexes designed for greater affordability.

MEDIUM DENSITY RESIDENTIAL

A range of attached, multi-unit types – including townhomes and multi-unit condos – are also proposed to support more compact and affordable housing types and tenures.

NEIGHBOURHOOD MIXED USE

A small number of distributed neighbourhood-scale commercial mixed-use sites are also considered, including opportunities for tourist accommodation and/or staff housing.

Local Precedents, New Examples

Examples of residential diversity already built at MONTANE provides a foundation from which further diversification can occur.

These images also reflect the strong local identity and unifying character of MONTANE, as defined by native landscape retention, natural building materials and simple shed and gable roof forms.

What types of homes are best suited? What’s missing?

SERVICING & PHASING

Significant investment has already been made to ensure right-sized infrastructure is in place to support phased development at MONTANE. We will continue to work with the City to ensure this continues in a diligent manner.

Engineering & Site Servicing

Preliminary servicing design (undertaken by WSP Engineering) is premised upon an extension of and connection to the City’s existing infrastructure.

Generally speaking, the servicing strategy for future development at MONTANE prioritizes:

DESIGN WITH NATURE. COMPLEX LAND, SIMPLE SOLUTIONS

Our approach to “working with the land” informs the overall servicing and phasing strategy, whereby more compact development areas are more efficiently serviced and the sequence of development is more logical. While terrain at MONTANE can be steep and challenging, these same characteristics lend themselves to simpler, “gravity fed” systems: pumps are used only when necessary and otherwise, gravity drives water distribution and sewer collection systems within pipes below streets.

GREENER STREETS

Street design at MONTANE is intended to prioritize a pedestrian-friendly means of accessing neighbourhoods, trails and open space. Narrowed pavement widths minimize visual impacts (e.g. cut/fill) while the parallel multi-use pathway extends and links to the trail network.

RESILIENT BY DESIGN. IMPROVING SYSTEMS

Detailed planning and design of community infrastructure at MONTANE – in accordance with local and Provincial standards – ultimately links to, expands and enhances City of Fernie systems through economies of scale (e.g. added users) and security of service (e.g. increased water supply and sanitary flows).

A Phased Approach

Carefully considered, phased development at MONTANE ensures that the extension of roads, neighbourhoods and infrastructure is logical, incremental (e.g. cost effective) and planned from the outset.

Further, each phase should bring a diversity of mutually-supportive uses and amenities to support residential development which in turn supports the neighbourhood commercial hub, and vice versa.

Based on our current understanding, the timing of the full “build out” is anticipated to take many years, subject to market demand.

The concept plan illustrates the anticipated sequence of generalized phases:

  1. The FIRST PHASE includes areas already built to date.
  2. In the SECOND PHASE, the focus is on developing the Neighbourhood Hub and Creekside neighbourhoods.
  3. The THIRD PHASE implements development of the Hillside and Castle Ridge neighbourhoods, completing the build out of MONTANE North …and setting the stage for phased development of MONTANE South.

NEXT STEPS

Today’s open house marks the beginning of a longer process to refine the vision for MONTANE and find clarity and alignment within the City’s plans and policies. We look forward to keeping you in the loop as we consider next steps.

Taking Stock of the Land, the Community, and the Times

The proposed concept for MONTANE seeks to improve upon the currently approved land use designations in favour of a plan that is more fitting with the current vision.

As a first step in the planning process for future development, this concept will be further refined and regulated as per the stages described at right. In addition to the regulatory steps, further field investigation and market analysis will also serve to adjust and refine the concept siteplan through future stages of development.

For now, we’re keen to get your feedback on the planning vision as currently proposed.

Tell us what you think!

Please let us know what you like, what you’re concerned about, what you’d like to see more of and/ or any other comments you might have.

More importantly, please tell us “why?” so we might better understand your comment. Write your ideas and comments on a sticky and place them directly on the presentation boards.

Next Steps

The concept plan for MONTANE has been developed with an intent to align with the overall vision and principles of the City of Fernie’s current Official Community Plan (2014).

Community feedback will be incorporated into an application to amend the Official Community Plan and Zoning bylaws to be considered within the City of Fernie’s referrals and approvals process.