Official Community Plan

OCP Final Opens in new windowThe Official Community Plan is a land-use planning tool that is used to guide Town Council in its decisions about development, zoning and services. In 2016-2017, the Official Community Plan was developed in consultation with the public, to be sure that public opinion and interest on issues of futre planning were taken into account.

The Official Community Plan delineates Policy, which Council and the public can then use to evaluate development proposals and ensure they are consistent with the community’s long-range plans. The Plan is reviewed and updated periodically to ensure that it continues to reflect the long-range planning objectives of the Town of Creston, on behalf of residents.

The Public Process

2018 OCP Award

The first phase of the Official Community Plan public consultation engaged hundreds of people of all ages in discussing and refining goals for future land use through Kitchen Table Talks and one-on-one interviews at community celebrations and events. Phase two, the OCP Challenge, was a chance to involve citizens in setting direction for actually pursuing those goals.

Creston’s OCP Challenge was an experiment in community planning and in rural placemaking. The process used a mobile app, a website, and paper scavenger hunt maps to get citizens exploring community issues and the community itself. They were directed to locations around Creston where Challenge Stations invited targeted feedback on specific municipal issues.

All told, we estimate that nearly 1,200 area residents contributed directly to the OCP. Participants have been as young as six (some outreach took part in local elementary schools) and older than 100 (outreach also took part in seniors homes). On average, a participant put 101 minutes into the process – a number that speaks to the depth of engagement achieved. 

Development & The OCP

Development Permits

Section 488 of the Local Government Act (BC) provides municipalities with the ability to regulate development for a number of purposes including: protection of the natural environment; protection of development from hazardous conditions; revitalization of an area; form and character of development; and other purposes as defined in the Act. A Development Permit (DP) is registered on the Title of the property, and may also vary the Zoning bylaw in the same way as a Development Variance Permit.

Section VI (pg. 45-71) of the OCP defines eight Development Permit Areas (DPAs). Each DPA lists specific development requirements that must be addressed prior to the issuance of a Development Permit. Developers are encouraged to read Section VI of the OCP, prior to applying for a Development Permit. Schedule B (DPAs 1-2) and C (DPAs 3-8) of the OCP define the properties found in each DPA. 

To obtain a Development Permit the land owner must submit a Development Permit Application to the Town. Council will consider each DP application on a case-by-case basis. Council have delegated the ability to make decisions regarding DPs to the Director of Municipal Services or Town Manager, where a development has value less than $100,000 (conditions apply, see Delegation of Authority Bylaw No. 1855, 2017). For more information in regards to DPs view the Development Permit Guide.

The conditions are different for each DPA. To assist developers in their planning we have compiled the following checklists as guides to the requirements for each individual DPA:

DPA 1 - Wildfire ProtectionDPA 5 - General Commercial
DPA 2 - Environmental SensitiveDPA 6 - Northwest Boulevard Local Area Plan
DPA 3 - Multi-Family ResidentialDPA 7 - Highway Service Commercial
DPA 4 - Downtown CoreDPA 8 - Industrial

Development Permit Area Maps:

OCP Schedule B - DPA 1-2OCP Schedule C - DPA 3-8

OCP Amendments

If your plans are not in conformance with the OCP, you will need to submit an Official Community Plan Amendment Application. OCP Amendments require a robust public process. Council considers Official Community Plan Amendment Applications on a case-by-case basis. Learn more about this process by viewing the Official Community Plan Amendments Procedures Guide.