Historic Ashcroft sign, 2006. Photo credit: Journal files

Ashcroft planning session shows progress on village priorities

Staff and council reviewed Ashcroft’s strategic plan to see status of numerous projects

The Village of Ashcroft’s plans and priorities, along with successes accomplished over the past two years, were highlighted at a special Strategic Planning session held last week.

Chief Administrative Officer Daniela Dyck reviewed the planning document, developed in 2020 to carry through 2022, encompassing the current council’s goals and priorities.

The first of seven priorities reviewed from the strategic plan was an upgrade of the village’s current emergency response and evacuation plan. Dyck said an evacuation plan for the Mesa has been developed, and the village will be exploring ways of incorporating a secondary egress route for residents in that area. Village staff also attended an emergency plan workshop, hosted by the Thompson-Nicola Regional District.

“It really opened up our eyes to a lot of the things we’ll need to do with our plan,” Dyck said, noting that the village is aiming to have its plan updated and adopted by council before the end of June.

A second priority reviewed from the strategic plan is the North Ashcroft Storm Drainage and Run-off Study, which Dyck said was well underway. Engineers have been hired and have reviewed the areas of concern, and a draft plan is anticipated to be back to staff by the end of March.

“It will be made available to the public once it’s approved,” Dyck said. “Then plans will need to be made to implement the recommendations, and we will be looking for grant funding as the infrastructure is expected to be costly.”

Providing potable water to the Ashcroft Indian Band was identified as priority number three on the strategic plan. Dyck said that several meetings have taken place to determine the scope of the project, and engineers have been asked to provide current water treatment plant capacity to staff.

“We need to ensure that we have enough water for Ashcroft before we start sending it outside of our boundaries,” Dyck said, noting one of the project requirements is that providing water to AIB be at zero cost to Ashcroft taxpayers.

Supply and demand of water is at the centre of priority number four: the twinning of the North Ashcroft reservoir. The Village is in the process of purchasing the property adjacent to the current reservoir, Dyck said, noting that a purchase price has been negotiated with the owner and an exclusion has been applied for with the Agricultural Land Reserve to subdivide the property.

Dyck said the village has applied for grant funding in anticipation of the ALR approval.

Rounding out the priorities identified within the strategic plan were the development of a trails master plan, the community garden, the Heritage Park and tree assessment, and the fire hall renovation and upgrade.

Staff also reviewed the plethora of bylaws, policies, and other projects that have been completed over the past two years.

“When you see them en masse like this, it really shows you how much has been done,” Mayor Barbara Roden said, passing along “kudos” to the village staff.


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