The Railtown district is comprised of the CP station

Consultant will plan Nelson’s Railtown development

Third in a series about the development of Nelson's Railtown district.

This is the third in a series about the Railtown district. Earlier stories are about the Izushi Society,  and transients in Cottonwood Park.

The City of Nelson is hiring a consultant to create a community plan for the Railtown district. The plan, paid for with a grant from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, will be completed by September 2016, according to the city’s head planner Pam Mierau.

“The consultant will take all our high-level documents — the Downtown Waterfront Master Plan, the official community plan, the Path to 2040 sustainability strategy — and interpreting them for Railtown,” Mierau said.

Railtown includes Cottonwood Falls Park, Government Rd., Railway St., and the far west end of Baker St. including the CPR station.

Asked why a plan is needed when the city already has the various plans mentioned above, Mierau said those plans cover general concepts and do not go into sufficient detail.

Nelson’s official community plan only mentions Railtown briefly and proposes the area continue to serve light industrial businesses plus some residential. The Sustainable Downtown and Waterfront Master Plan says essentially the same thing.

Mierau said the new plan is needed because “that area has sat there for a long time. What is it about the area that is not working? Do we have the right density, do we have the right mix of uses, do we need to create incentives for developers? We know we want more residential down there, but where? This is really about what’s on the ground, about what makes sense there.”

Mierau said there may be contaminated land in Railtown because of bulk fuel plants that existed on Government Rd. and the coke processing plant that once operated at 610 Railway St. But she said the plan will be completed first before possible contamination is investigated.

What the official community plan says about Railtown

“The Railtown district is proposed to continue to serve light industrial businesses … and to have modest infill multi-unit residential of some 100 units … These residential units should be located in areas around Baker and Railway streets in order to intensify and reinforce this zone as the core of the neighbourhood.

“They can take the form of residential live/work units as a means of providing affordable space for local artists and small business entrepreneurs. Commercial and industrial uses should be compatible with residential uses. Opportunities for the development of high tech and research and development jobs should be explored.”

— Official community plan, last updated 2013, page 31

What the Sustainable Waterfront and Downtown Master Plan says about Railtown

“The area surrounding the newly renovated CP Rail station will become the new hub of activity within the Railtown district. In immediate proximity to downtown, and with amenities such as Cottonwood Creek Falls, this important neighbourhood will see increased vitality with up to 100 additional housing units, some as live/work units, and approximately 50 to 100 new jobs as a result of new and intensified development of the existing zoned light industrial lands.

“Downtown and Railtown will become better connected to the waterfront through additional linkages that include potential at-grade or bridge crossings over the CP tracks and a trail system following Cottonwood Creek.”

— Sustainable Waterfront and Downtown Master Plan 2011, page i

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Perry Siding man drowns in kayaking accident

The death occurred in Slocan River last month

Nelson Innovation Centre opens in Railtown

Centre will provide networking, training and workspace for all things tech

Memories all that remain of Balfour general store

History by Greg Nesteroff: In 1912 a log cabin near Balfour became a store

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

B.C. NDP changing WorkSafeBC regulations to respond to COVID-19

Employers say reclassifying coronavirus could be ‘ruinous’

Baby raccoon rescued from 10-foot deep drainage pipe on Vancouver Island

‘Its cries were loud, pitiful and heartbreaking,’ Saanich animal control officer says

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Windows broken, racist graffiti left on Okanagan home

Family says nothing like this has happened since they moved to Summerland in 1980s

B.C. man who went by ‘Doctor Ray Gaglardi’ charged with sex assault of teenage boys

The man, 75, is accused of assaulting teenage boys he met through Coquitlam-area churches

B.C.’s potential deficit $12.5 billion as spending spikes, taxes drop

Finance Minister Carole James gives COVID-19 outlook

Commercial huckleberry harvesting restricted in Kootenays

The province of B.C. has banned commercial-scale picking from July 15 to October 15

Canadians torn on scaling back COVID-19 benefits to save money: poll

Of those surveyed, 78 per cent said they were worried about the size of the deficit

Most Read