Rocky View County Planning is taking comments and opinions on a proposed Area Structure Plan.
The Glenbow Ranch Area Structure Plan would accommodate approximately 14,300 residents in, 4,744 dwellings, from RVC land immediately adjacent to Gleneagles, stretching almost to the Calgary city limits.
A large portion of these residential dwellings along the Bow River South of Highway 1A would be concentrated in one area near the Rock Point Church.
Richard Barss, Project Manager for the Glenbow Ranch Area structure plan, says the idea is to have a sensitive integration between residential development and conservation.
"We've spent quite a bit of time mapping out areas we think have high conservation value, but could in theory be developed for a home," he explains. "Our goal here was to look at areas that could be developed, and have about 50% of that permanently conserved, and allow about 50% to be developed for residential homes."
Barrs says including Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park, nearly 75% of the land between Cochrane and Calgary would remain untouched.
A concern many Cochrane residents may have is traffic congestion, Barrs says the plan would only require an slight extension of the growth and upgrades already needed for Highway 1A.
"We started with a baseline analysis of what would happen if this project did not take place, we looked at the city of Calgary growth, RVC background growth, and Cochrane growth, that model does show substantial upgrades required along 1A if nothing happens."
To accommodate traffic with the plan Barss explains at least 3 more traffic lights along 1A in RVC, and an extension of the road widening that's already needed will be required.
The plan may also include day to day commercial business, such as grocery stores.
Comments on the Glenbow Ranch Area Structure Plan first formal draft will be accepted until September 15, 2016. Afterwards, opinions and ideas will be considered, and the plan will be adjusted for second draft.
Barrs shares the intention is to have the second draft brought forward to council by December/January.