Calgary golf courses could see their taxes trimmed by 20 per cent if a motion by Coun. Ward Sutherland is passed by council. Sutherland said courses inside the city are paying a large portion of their annual income in taxes because courses are taxed based on their annual property assessments, regardless of their seasonal operations. The city…
Council need not approve this “rezoning”. Its rational is always that it is private land, therefore the owner has the right to do with it as they please. Of course they do, but within the current zoning, which they knew when they bought it.
Nearly a year after the Harvest Hills golf course was closed by its new owners, a proposal is before the City’s Planning Committee. They are hoping for approval to add 700 residential units on the old fairways.
The committee will decide if the special purpose recreation designation on the land will be changed to allow homes.
This is what always happens with this Council. The green space would not be developed if the Council simply maintained the current zoning. But it gives in to developers, like it did at Paskapoo slopes and Shawnee Slopes.
The council’s rationale is that the land is private, so the owners can do what they what with it. However, the owners knew what the zoning was when they bought the land, so why should the Council bail them out by rezoning and oh, by the way, increasing the value of the land.
The threat to Harvest Hills green space is endemic to Calgary. The last two major loses (Shawnee Slopes and McCall Lake), were both breezily dismissed by the major as being doomed from the start by a flawed process. Hardly consolation to residents – just ask those that tried to save Paskapoo Slopes from development.
Calgary needs a change of attitude at the Council level: communities first.