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I did an interview with CBC, here is the story.

Will new inland port rid Rosser of its green space?

Green space could be snapped up by industrial development, RM staff say

Posted: Jul 26, 2013 6:28 AM CT

Last Updated: Jul 26, 2013 12:43 PM CT

The city of Winnipeg and CentrePort say Little Mountain Park will be preserved, but an advisor to the RM of Rosser says the land may eventually become far more valuable for industrial development instead. The city of Winnipeg and CentrePort say Little Mountain Park will be preserved, but an advisor to the RM of Rosser says the land may eventually become far more valuable for industrial development instead. (CBC)
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The rural municipality of Rosser is laying out the welcome mat for CentrePort, an inland transportation hub slated to be built in the area.

The RM held open houses this week as it begins the process of re-zoning the land to allow development of the inland port.

Bob Brown, the RM's advisor on CentrePort issues, said more people turned up than were expected, including some people concerned about the future of Little Mountain Park, a green space in the area.

'You're not going to see … golf courses or … dog parks … because that's not what inland ports are all about.'—Bob Brown, advisor to RM of Rosser

Centreport and the city have both said the green space will be preserved, along with Little Mountain Sportsplex and a privately-owned golf course.

But Brown said as CentrePort is developed over the next few decades, the land will likely become more valuable for its commercial and industrial potential.

"If CentrePort is successful, that's the type of use that will predominate in the area," he said. "You're not going to see other typical urban uses probably, including golf courses or recreation areas or dog parks ... because that's not what inland ports are all about."

Brown said it's the market that will eventually decide what CentrePort, a 20,000 acre transportation hub, will look like.

"Nobody is going to be forced to vacate, be it a residence or a dog park. But if CentrePort is successful, the market will eventually probably encourage people to leave because their lands will have more value for development purposes than what they are for current uses, and people will take that option and sell off probably."

He said use of the park may even die off as development progresses.

"You're not necessarily going to be driving ... through an industrial area to get to a spot to walk your dog," he said.

There may even come a day when a golf course in the CentrePort footprint, The Players Course, disappears.

Brown said it's an option any land owner can consider, such as when the city recently mulled selling off John Blumberg golf course in the RM of Headingley.

'The province is going to do what the province is going to do, and there's not a damn thing anybody can do about it.'—Lloyd Johnson

"If ... they are surrounded by viable commercial industrial type activities, and they're in this to make money, then probably at some point they'll say, 'We can make more money selling this off than we can from green fees.'"

Winnipegger Lloyd Johnson attended some of the RM's sessions this week and came away very disappointed.

He said he and others who are worried about Little Mountain Park wanted to have their say but that didn't happen.

"Basically they were not too interested in what we had to say at all," he said.

He said he did talk with officials with the RM of Rosser but that didn't go very far either.

"I got the distinct impression that their hands were tied as well, like the province is going to do what the province is going to do, and there's not a damn thing anybody can do about it," he said.

Johnson said he and others will keep lobbying to assure the park's future.

But he admits it is probably inevitable the park will eventually disappear as CentrePort grows.

"I think it's terrible. I think it's a crime against everybody," he said. "This is a historic area. It should be preserved. It's green space that the city loves to tear up. Anything green they want to plow under, and it'd be just a crime to see this disappear. It's part of the fabric of the city of Winnipeg. We have to protect it."

CentrePort Canada Zoning and Design Standards


The Rural Municipality of Rosser, supported by the Province of Manitoba and with the cooperation of the City of Winnipeg, has hired a team of planning consultants to prepare a zoning framework and design standards to guide development of the first phases of CentrePort Canada.

We are asking the community to get involved in a number of ways. The consultant team ofPlaceMakersMMM Group, and CNT will be conducting interviews in June with selected entities most closely involved with the first phase of CentrePort Canada. We are looking to identify potential opportunities and issues with a zoning framework outline.

Then, in July open houses, we will ask planning officials, the business community, and residents to consider ideas and actions to help guide the RM of Rosser and CentrePort towards a future of increased opportunity. We will gather and refine ideas about subdivision design, connectivity, parcel sizes and uses, as well as the ultimate form and function of the area when fully developed.

We invite the community to three open houses to share your ideas and feedback:

  • Monday, July 22, 4:30-6 pm. This is a community input open house, setting the stage for zoning and design. The planning team will give a summary of the June interviews, and ask for additional public direction on functionality that you would like to see enabled by the new Rosser CentrePort zoning framework. This event will be held at the Community Hall at Grosse Isle, 0117E - PR 321, in the R.M. of Rosser.
  • Thursday, July 25, 5:30-7 pm. The design team will take the combination of Monday's input along with intelligence collected in May and June, and spend the week developing a framework for the CentrePort Design Standards and Phase 1 Stage 1A Zoning Designations. We'll ask the community for direction to refine ideas and provide a mid-course correction. This open house will be held at the Community Hall at Grosse Isle, 0117E - PR 321, in the R.M. of Rosser.
  • During August and September, the planning consultants will be drafting the zoning framework, under the guidance of the Steering Committee. Once the first draft is complete, we will host another open house in the fall for additional community input.

A key guiding principle for CentrePort development is establishing a streamlined and transparent development approval process. This calls for a modern approach to zoning that emphasizes upfront visioning and consultation processes to develop standards that govern basic building form, placement of structures and related components of the built environment with predictable physical outcomes and performance based criteria rather than overly detailed lists of permitted or conditional uses.

The preparation of a form-based zoning framework will accommodate immediate development proposals in Rosser and is intended to also be transferable to future phases of CentrePort development, in both Rosser and Winnipeg. A Steering Committee with representatives from Rosser, Manitoba Local Government, and Winnipeg’s Planning Department is working with the consultant team to provide ongoing professional and technical input throughout the project.

This collaborative effort aligns with The CentrePort Canada Act, which directs the Province and the affected municipalities to develop a singular and comprehensive planning framework to guide CentrePort development.

Check back on this web page for additional information and ongoing updates.

Resources

Planning Consultant Team

For questions or further information, please contact:
Bob Brown
CentrePort Project Coordinator 
Rural Municipality of Rosser
Box 131
Rosser , MB R0H 1E0
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

July 22, 2013
CentrePort Design Workshop Open House

The Rural Municipality of Rosser, supported by the Province of Manitoba and with the cooperation of the City of Winnipeg, has hired a team of planning consultants to prepare a zoning framework and design standards to guide development of the first phases of CentrePort Canada.

Monday, July 22, 4:30-6 pm.

This is a community input open house, setting the stage for zoning and design. The planning team will give a summary of the June interviews, and ask for additional public direction on functionality that you would like to see enabled by the new Rosser CentrePort zoning framework. This event will be held at the Community Hall at Grosse Isle, 0117E - PR 321, in the R.M. of Rosser.