Picture Sooke: Official Community Plan Review

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How Sooke looks and feels is shaped by our Official Community Plan (OCP), a guiding document that is now in the final stages of being updated. Many thanks to those who provided comments on the draft OCP at community pop-ups, open houses, by email, during stakeholder sessions, and through the discussion forums on this platform. Your feedback is integral to developing a COMMUNITY plan; we are grateful for your involvement.

Check back here for the latest on the Official Community Plan review process.


What is an OCP, Who is it for, and why is it important?

The OCP is a

How Sooke looks and feels is shaped by our Official Community Plan (OCP), a guiding document that is now in the final stages of being updated. Many thanks to those who provided comments on the draft OCP at community pop-ups, open houses, by email, during stakeholder sessions, and through the discussion forums on this platform. Your feedback is integral to developing a COMMUNITY plan; we are grateful for your involvement.

Check back here for the latest on the Official Community Plan review process.


What is an OCP, Who is it for, and why is it important?

The OCP is a bylaw, prepared and adopted by District Council in compliance with the Provincial Local Government Act. It is a long-range policy plan that guides the District's decision-making related to land use as well as other community interests such as housing and infrastructure.

The OCP is the umbrella policy document for the District of Sooke, owned and implemented by all departments. It provides the overarching strategic direction for District Council and staff, who consider and apply OCP vision and policies to a wide range of municipal decisions such as budgeting, servicing, capital projects, and in the review of land use and development proposals. The OCP is not intended to provide highly detailed policies on topics that are already covered in the District's other Master Plans and regulations. Rather, this OCP builds upon and supersedes those plans and tools.

What is its reach?

The OCP applies to all lands within the District of Sooke boundaries.

As a living plan, the OCP is generally reviewed and updated every 10 years. Council may also authorize periodic OCP updates to proactively address or respond to changes in the community or local, regional, and global trends and opportunities. Plan amendments are subject to a formal Council review and approvals process which includes public consultation, public hearing, and required notifications.

  • Council Gives Second Reading to Official Community Plan Bylaw: Public Hearing Scheduled for September 27, 2022

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    At the September 8, 2022, Special Council meeting, the District of Sooke Council gave Second Reading to the Official Community Plan (OCP) Bylaw No. 800. A Public Hearing has been scheduled for Tuesday, September 27, 2022, at 7:00 p.m.

    To participate in the public hearing, you can:

    1. Provide a written submission before 12:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 27th.
      1. Email – send your submission to Corporate Services at corp@sooke.ca.
      2. Mail – address your submission to Corporate Services, Municipal Hall, 2205 Otter Point Road, Sooke BC V9Z 1J2.
      3. In-person – place your submission, addressed to Corporate Services, in the drop-box located at the main entrance of Municipal Hall at any time before the submission deadline or delivered to reception during office hours, Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
    2. Address Council during the hearing, in person.
      1. The Hearing will take place in Council Chambers at District of Sooke Municipal Hall starting at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 27, 2022. Overflow space is available, if needed, in the adjacent Fire Services Lounge.
      2. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. for those wishing to attend the Public Hearing. Persons wishing to speak, may sign up on arrival and throughout the Hearing.
      3. While speakers are not restricted to speaking duration, (speaker) limitations to assist with equity and fairness of all who wish to speak and avoid redundancy may be made at the call of the Chair.

    Note: Written submissions must be received by 12:00 p.m. on Wednesday, September 21st to be included in the Agenda Package. Items received after this time and before 12:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 27th will be included in the Supplemental Agenda Package.

    Documents:

  • September 8, 2022 Special Meeting Agenda Available, including updated OCP, Bylaw No. 800, 2022

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    On September 8, 2022 Council may consider Second Reading of OCP Bylaw. No. 800, 2022.

    See the agenda, including the updated Bylaw being considered here >>

    Please note that following Council Procedure Bylaw No. 728, 2019, public input is not permitted at this meeting as this bylaw will have its own opportunity for public input at the public hearing (date to be determined).

    The September 8th, 2022 meeting will begin at 5:00 p.m. Attend in person to listen at Municipal Hall, Council Chamber or watch/listen online.

    The Public Hearing can be scheduled if OCP Bylaw, No. 800, 2022 is given Second Reading.

    Previous Council Action

    On April 11, 2022 Council gave 1st Reading of the draft OCP Bylaw No. 800. The following actions have taken place since 1st Reading was granted:

    • April 12, 2022 - Referral letters were sent to relevant jurisdictions and outside agencies for review and comments;
    • April 12, 2022 - The Regional Context Statement was forwarded to the CRD Board for consideration;
    • April 12-May 13, 2022 - submission period for the public to make comment on Bylaw no. 800;
    • May 7, 2022 - OCP Open House held at the Sooke Community Hall;
    • May 16, 2022 - Committee of the Whole workshop for chapter review of Bylaw No. 800
    • May 18, 2022 - The CRD Planning and Protective Services Committee considered Sooke's Regional Context Statement favourably and forwarded it to the CRD Board for consideration on June 8, 2022;
    • June 8, 2022 - The CRD Board accepted Sooke's Regional Context Statement;
    • June 15, 2022 - Committee of the Whole workshop for chapter review of Bylaw No. 800;
    • July 19, 2022 - Committee of the Whole workshop for chapter review of Bylaw No. 800;
    • July 20, 2022-August 31, 2022 - Revisions compiled for consideration at 2nd Reading.
  • Update: Second Reading of OCP Bylaw No. 800, 2022 May Be Considered on September 8, 2022

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    A meeting for consideration of second reading of OCP Bylaw No.800 has been scheduled for Thursday, September 8, 2022 at 5:00 p.m. The agenda package, including the amended OCP will be available, by Friday, September 2, 2022.

    Public may attend to listen to this meeting in person or online. Following the Council Procedure Bylaw, public comment will not be permitted at this meeting; public comment is reserved for the Public Hearing.

    The Public Hearing can be scheduled after OCP Bylaw No. 800 is given second reading.

    Recent Background

    The Chapter Review of the OCP by Council continued beyond the May 16, 2022 meeting and included additional meetings on:

    • June 15, 2022
    • June 21, 2022 (cancelled due to staff illness)
    • July 19, 2022

    At the July 19, 2022 Special Meeting of Council, Council resolved:

    THAT Council direct staff to prepare amendments to the Official Community Plan to reflect Council feedback.

    AND THAT Council direct staff to bring forward all public comments, referral comments, and the bylaw for consideration of second reading, as amended, at a Council meeting in early September.


  • Thank you for Attending the May 7th Open House: What's Next?

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    Thank you to the nearly 400 residents who joined us for the Official Community Plan Open House on Saturday (May 7, 2022) and to the residents who are also providing written correspondence by email to info[at]sooke.ca. We appreciate your involvement as Sooke’s OCP is reviewed and updated.

    What’s next:

    • May 16, 2022 at 6pm: Council will undertake a Chapter Review of the OCP at the Committee of the Whole meeting. This will allow comments shared with members of Council at the Open House to be discussed Council at a public meeting. *Please note that public input will occur at a scheduled Public Hearing, public input will not be permitted at this meeting.
    • June 7, 2022 at 7pm:
      1. A staff report will be presented to Council, including:
        • Co­­mments received through the referral agency process;
        • written comments received at the May 7th Open House;
        • written correspondence received from the public April 12, 2022 (after the bylaw was given first reading) to May 13, 2022; and
        • considerations arising from the May 16, 2022 Chapter Review into an amended Bylaw.
      2. Council may consider giving Second Reading as amended to OCP Bylaw No. 800.
    • After the bylaw is given Second Reading (initial discussion): a Public Hearing will be scheduled.
    • Public Hearing
    • Council to consider Third Reading (final Council discussion)
    • Council to consider adoption

    Note:

    • First Reading of a Bylaw is the introduction of a Bylaw to begin the legislative process towards adoption.
    • As per the District of Sooke Council Procedure Bylaw, Public Hearings are scheduled after Second Reading is given.
    • *As per the District of Sooke Council Procedure Bylaw, “Neither public input nor delegations are permitted on subject matters which will be provided their own opportunity for public input” such as a Public Hearing as is the case for the OCP Bylaw No. 800.
      • This means, when sitting as Council, the public will be invited to speak to Council on the bylaw at the public hearing only. This is to ensure all residents who may be affected by outcomes on the subject of a public hearing have an equal opportunity to hear the discussion in its entirety.
    • After the public hearing closes, the public comment period closes and Council cannot receive any new information.

    Looking to review public feedback received throughout the process? Please find engagement summaries and input received throughout the last 18 months in our posted engagement reports:


  • Council Gives First Reading to Official Community Plan Bylaw No. 800

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    At the April 11, 2022 Regular Council meeting, the District of Sooke Council gave First Reading to the Official Community Plan (OCP) Bylaw No. 800.

    The public is invited to learn more about the Bylaw at an OCP Open House on Saturday, May 7th from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Sooke Community Hall, located at 2037 Shields Road (in the dining room on the lower level).

    At the Open House, the public will be able to speak with Council and staff, and provide written comments for the public record.

    Input on OCP Bylaw No. 800 can be provided by:

    • email to info@sooke.ca;
    • written comment at the May 7, 2022 Open House, or;
    • written comment in person or by mail delivered to the Sooke Municipal Hall.

    Input on the Bylaw will continue to be received until noon on the day of the public hearing. However, early submissions are encouraged to provide Council with sufficient time to review your comments. A date for the public hearing has not been set.

    Input received between April 12th, 2022 and May 13th, 2022 will be presented to Council in a staff report at a Special Council Meeting on June 7th, 2022 where Second reading will be considered.

    Input received after May 13th, 2022 will be included in the Public Hearing Agenda Package.

    At the public hearing, the public will have the opportunity to address Council on the bylaw in person. After the public hearing closes, Council cannot receive new information including further public comment on the bylaw.

    Document:

  • Council to Consider First Reading of OCP Bylaw on April 11, 2022

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    At the March 28, 2022 Regular Council Meeting, Council discussed the next steps for the OCP currently under review and directed staff to bring forward an OCP with the following revised for consideration of first reading at the April 11, 2022 Regular Council meeting:

    • in section Section 3.14 Comprehensive Development, change the second bulletin from "consent" to "consult"
    • Whiffin Spit land use designation of Community Residential be replaced with Rural Residential and include a Neighbourhood Area Plan boundary (similar to section 3.15 Billings Spit/Kaltasin Neighbourhood Are Plan).
    • Development Permit Are guidelines for the foreshore area, replace "30 m" with "15 m."
    • Replace Lot 6, Plan VIP26066 (West Ridge Trails) land use designation of Rural Residential with Community Residential

    As described in the Official Community Plan Bylaw No. 800, 2022 Staff Report in the April 11, 2022 Regular Meeting of Council Agenda Package, staff will present:

    THAT Council give first reading to the Official Community Plan Bylaw No. 800, 2022;

    THAT Council consider the Official Community Plan Bylaw No. 800, 2022 in conjunction with the Budget and Five-Year Financial plan;

    THAT consider the Official Community Plan Bylaw No. 800, 2022 in conjunction with the Waste Management Plans;

    THAT Council refer the bylaw to all external agencies and partners for comment;

    AND THAT Council direct staff to report back at a future Council meeting on the input and recommend any adjustments to the draft prior to council considering the second reading of Official Community Plan Bylaw No. 800, 2022.

    The public can attend the meeting in person at Sooke Municipal Hall (7:00 p.m. start) or watch it on the District's YouTube channel. The meeting will be recorded and available on the District's website and YouTube channel for those unable to join in real-time.

  • Council Invites Public to an OCP Open House on May 7th at Sooke Community Hall

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    The public is invited to attend an (in person) Open House to discuss the Official Community Plan (OCP) on Saturday, May 7th from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Sooke Community Hall, located at 2037 Shields Road.

    Council’s discussion with the community on the draft OCP is the next phase in the plan development after the OCP Advisory Committee completed their work over the last 18 months. "I would like to extend my appreciation to the committee for their efforts in bringing the draft plan to its current state and acknowledge the work of this team: Helen Ritts (chair), Norman Amirault, Councillor Al Beddows, Terry Cristall, Steve Grundy, Ellen Lewers, Linda MacMillan and Siomonn Pulla," said Mayor Tait. “Council recognizes that engagement with our community on the OCP has been impacted by the pandemic - with much of our conversations held virtually. We are very pleased to host this 'in person' community event to continue our consultation with you.”

    The evolution of the draft OCP in its current state is the result of significant community input, with hundreds of residents providing feedback through participation boards at local businesses, online forums, virtual stakeholder meetings, letters, phone calls, community pop-ups at local markets and the Celebrate Sooke! event in September, and an in-person (by registration due to the pandemic) Open House with the Advisory Committee in October.

    All municipal policies, plans and regulations must be in alignment with the OCP. The OCP review is an opportunity for the District to ensure that the goals and objectives remain relevant and to update as needed, guiding the direction of land use in Sooke for the next ten years.

    Light refreshments will be provided at the May 7th event, and all attendees can enter to WIN one of two $100 grocery store gift cards.

    Related documents:


    * At the March 28, 2022 Regular Council Meeting, Council discussed the next steps for the OCP currently under review and directed staff to bring forward an OCP with the following revised for consideration of first reading at the April 11, 2022 Regular Council meeting:

    • in section Section 3.14 Comprehensive Development, change the second bulletin from "consent" to "consult"
    • Whiffin Spit land use designation of Community Residential be replaced with Rural Residential and include a Neighbourhood Area Plan boundary (similar to section 3.15 Billings Spit/Kaltasin Neighbourhood Are Plan).
    • Development Permit Are guidelines for the foreshore area, replace "30 m" with "15 m."
    • Replace Lot 6, Plan VIP26066 (West Ridge Trails) land use designation of Rural Residential with Community Residential

    The DRAFT OCP is being revised based on this feedback. An updated draft will be published shortly.

  • Council Directs Staff to Revise Draft OCP for Consideration of First Reading at the April 11, 2022 Regular Council Meeting

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    At the March 28, 2022 Regular Council Meeting, Council discussed the next steps for the OCP currently under review and directed staff to bring forward an OCP with the following revised for consideration of first reading at the April 11, 2022 Regular Council meeting:

    • in section Section 3.14 Comprehensive Development, change the second bulletin from "consent" to "consult"
    • Whiffin Spit land use designation of Community Residential be replaced with Rural Residential and include a Neighbourhood PAre Plan boundary (similar to section 3.15 Billings Spit/Kaltasin Neighbourhood Are Plan).
    • Development Permit Are guidelines for the foreshore area, replace "30 m" with "15 m."
    • Replace Lot 6, Plan VIP26066 (West Ridge Trails) land use designation of Rural Residential with Community Residential

    To receive the meeting agenda by email, sign up here. Attend the April 11th meeting in person at the municipal hall or watch it on our YouTube channel.

  • OCP Discussion Topics Staff Report at March 21, 2022 Committee of the Whole

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    At the March 7, 2022 Committee of the Whole/Special Council meeting staff were directed to provide further information on the draft Official Community Plan (OCP) as they relate to the topics raised by the public at that meeting. Staff summarized the comments into themes and provided additional context related to the recommendation to include the policy in the current draft OCP.

    The staff report also compares and contrasts the current (2010) OCP and the draft OCP to identify the big changes. The themes discussed include:

    • Land Use Designations;
    • Shoreline Building Setbacks and;
    • Density and how we address housing affordability and diversity in the draft OCP.

    Read the staff report in the March 21, 2022 Committee of the Whole Meeting Agenda >>

    Watch the meeting recording:


  • March 7, 2022 Committee of the Whole & Special Council Meeting Recommendations

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    Many thanks to those who attended the Committee of the Whole and Special Council meeting on March 7, 2022.

    Recommendations arising from the Committee of the Whole and supported at the Special Council meeting which followed, include:

    • THAT Council direct staff to report back on the questions, concerns and public feedback raised at the March 7, 2022 Committee of the Whole meeting prior to the OCP open house.
    • THAT Council direct staff to schedule an OCP public open house and a subsequent Committee of the Whole to review the findings.

    Timelines for these items are being determined.

Page last updated: 07 Oct 2022, 01:00 PM