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Ptarmigan residents inform council buyouts have been unfair as empty heaps rezoned

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No new houses or companies shall be constructed on Ptarmigan Court docket heaps that have been purchased by the municipality. However some remaining owners who rejected buyouts after the April 2020 flood advised council on Tuesday they have been being handled unfairly by the municipality and that the buyouts provided have been unfair.

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The municipality provided buyouts to all 69 property house owners in Ptarmigan Court docket after it flooded in April 2020. The house owners of 17 vacant heaps and 35 cell houses opted for a buyout at a value of $10.2 million.

One other 12 house house owners and two lot house owners selected to remain. Three house house owners selected to remain and lift their houses above flood ranges. Wooden Buffalo Housing purchased 32 cell houses to maneuver into rural and Indigenous communities.

The province funded these buyouts on the situation that future improvement be restricted on the properties.

Administration proposed re-zoning the previous websites of houses in Ptarmigan Court docket into an Environmental Preservation District. This turns the heaps into pure, open areas. Native residents might be consulted on what that might appear like, equivalent to a park or neighborhood backyard. Residential and industrial developments on these heaps are banned.

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CAO Paul Thorkelsson, Mayor Sandy Bowman and administrative workers talked about current houses wouldn’t be impacted by this zoning change.

However some residents feared their house values would drop. Others argued the buyouts provided weren’t sufficient for some residents to depart. Residents Raine Eskelson, Kim Hurley, and Darcy and Michelle Jenkins argued in letters to council that the municipality ought to renegotiate buyouts with remaining residents.

“I won’t be able to promote my house sooner or later and the value of our houses will plummet. I couldn’t afford to depart with the buyout that was provided,” wrote Eskelson in a letter to council. “Perhaps the RMWB ought to supply us a greater buyout value and communicate with us, have a gathering with us.”

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Lorraine Albert
Lorraine Albert stands in entrance of her cell house in Ptarmigan Trailer Park shortly after the neighbourhood reopened on Friday, Could 1, 2020. An evacuation was ordered for the trailer park after the Fort McMurray neighbourhood started flooding on Sunday, April 26, 2020. Vincent McDermott/Fort McMurray Right this moment/Postmedia Community ORG XMIT: POS2005021408474852

Lorraine Albert, one other resident against the rezoning, advised council remaining residents fear about being compelled out ultimately. Ptarmigan Court docket has been poorly maintained for the reason that buyouts, she mentioned. Roads are in unhealthy form, current parks and greenbelts are sometimes ignored by municipal workers, and litter and dumping is widespread.

“What I get from that’s we’re lower than the remainder of town,” she mentioned.

Councillor Kendrick Cardinal questioned if another choices might be thought of. Councillors Ken Ball and Lance Bussieres requested about transferring remaining houses or consolidating them in Ptarmigan in order that they wouldn’t be unfold out. Municipal workers and Thorkelssen described the cope with the province as strict.

Council handed the movement, with solely Ball opposed. Councillor Loretta Waquan was absent from the assembly.

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