MD City Council considering further silo developments | Spare News
“Ideas cannot be confined to the confines of a silo,” wrote author Steve Hardy. “They need space to run around and sometimes bump into strangers.”
It turns out that two separate proposals from MD residents of Pincher Creek demonstrate that big thinkers think alike when it comes to using refurbished grain silos for recreational lodging.
Spearpoint Cattle Company
The MD of Pincher Creek Council held a public hearing for the proposed first leisure accommodation plan, which would be located just outside of Twin Butte off Highway 6. The public hearing was held to rezone property from agriculture to rural recreation R2.
The developers, Clint Marr and Carter Marr, both spoke at the hearing to explain the rationale for the project and address any concerns residents might have, although there were no submissions and no one in the audience spoke out against the project.
Although private internet-based short-term rental options are available for the project, Clint said going through the municipal process was the right course of action.
“We want to be upfront and transparent with our neighbors and our community,” Clint said. “We want to do it right; we don’t want to hide behind an Airbnb or bed and breakfast scenario. We want to do it the right way. »
The motivation behind the idea, Carter added, was economic diversification in the face of the rising operational costs of livestock farming.
“For most ranches, it’s almost impossible to hang on. Most families have people working off the ranch just to keep going and pay for ranching expenses with the money they earned outside of farming,” he said.
Diversifying into tourist accommodation, he continued, was a way to capitalize on the growing tourist interest in the area and was a better option than gradually selling plots of land to wealthy businessmen. looking to build their vacation homes.
“We’ve gone from a hidden gem in the corner of southwestern Alberta to a new hotspot for travelers around the world,” Carter said. “Many believe this is the start of the tourist wave in Pincher Creek.”
Carter also clarified that the business was strictly small-scale tourist accommodation and that the general term “campground” was inaccurate. Since only four bins would be constructed (three for guest accommodation and one for a community barbecue area), the number of guests and subsequent traffic would be minimal.
The renovated grain silos themselves were deliberately chosen to match the rural landscape.
“There are 97 grain elevators that I can count from my driver’s seat staying on Highway 6 to Waterton,” he added. “Nobody ever cared about the 97 grain bins we have on the highway right now, including the three I just put up behind my house last year.”
“We find our project very minimalistic,” Carter continued. “It’s a way for us to continue as a ranch and not have to resort to less desirable options. At the end of the day, we have to ask you all to trust us that we’re going to have a vacation getaway. very pleasant, subtle and quiet that will only impact our community for the greater good.
River Bend Ranch Houses
Council approved the first reading of a proposed identical rezoning from agriculture to rural recreation R2 to NE-20-6-1-W5. The rezoning would convert five grain elevators into tourist accommodation as part of the River Bend Ranch Houses business proposal.
“There must have been a sale on the grain elevators,” the councilman joked. John MacGarva before passing first reading.
The proposal would rezone 20 acres between Lundbreck and Beaver Mines that are currently unusable for agriculture since no hay can be planted and low grass cover allows for minimal grazing.
Three of the silo cabins would house a king bed and bathroom, with a kitchen including a sink, fridge and microwave. The silos would also contain a wood burning stove and an air conditioning unit.
The other two units would be offered as exclusive cabins, with a larger square footage and one queen bed and two single beds to accommodate family groups. The kitchen would be similar to the other cabins but would include a stove and dishwasher. The exclusive cabins would also have a wraparound porch with a patio and barbecue.
Access to the property is via a gravel road which could potentially be tarred in the future. Once on the property, a road should be developed, although this is simply an extension of the existing MD agreement for the owner’s driveway.
The bins would be placed just down the hill from the owner’s house, providing privacy but also easy contact in the event of a problem. Each cabin would be anchored in foundations but built on drill mats to allow relocation if necessary; electricity to the units would be supplied by a parallel line. Each cabin would have its own electrical panel.
A new water well and sewage system would be installed as per regulations.
The proposal includes an on-site storage container to house a washer and dryer for guests, as well as storage space for river gear to be recreated in the nearby Castle River. If the rezoning is ultimately approved, a development permit will need to be obtained for the container from the MD Development Authority.
A public hearing for the proposed rezoning will be held on Tuesday, November 22 at 6 p.m. in council chambers.