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Path cleared for Nordic spa in Saskatoon

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A Nordic spa development in the Willows neighbourhood is a step closer to reality after city council approved changes to the area’s community plan on Wednesday.

Dream Development originally pitched the project in 2021 but was flatly rejected by city councillors over its lack of consultation with the neighbourhood.

“This first came before council about two years ago, and at that time there was a lot of opposition from residents on this proposal,” said Ward 7 Councillor Mairin Loewen, who represents the area encompassing the Willows.

Residents told council at the time they were worried the development would spoil their views, and the tranquility in the neighbourhood would be wrecked by increased traffic.

On Wednesday night, Dream Development’s Brad Zurevinski said the company took the “strong direction” to heart.

“More public consultation with the residents was needed to make sure we get the plan right for all stakeholders.”

Dream hired consultants and spent the past year surveying and meeting with residents to get their input on how to adapt the project, said Zurevinski.

He said the majority of respondents opposed the retail-commercial development portion of Dream’s proposal, but most believed a new investment in the golf course and its amenities would improve real estate values.

About 70 per cent said the spa should be built further away from existing development than what was proposed in Dream’s original plan, to minimize impact on traffic.

Dream’s new pitch ditches the retail in favour of other amenities, and moves the actual spa development to a northern section of the neighbourhood.

The proposal, which passed unanimously on Wednesday night, would see the Willows Golf Course redeveloped from 27 to 18 holes, a new southern access to the neighbourhood added to Clarence Avenue, and traffic calming put in on Cartwright Street.

“[This] allows for a very significant investment within the Willows for amenities, upgrades, and a redeveloped 18-hole golf course that will make the Willows economically sustainable now and into the future,” Zurevinski said.

The path is cleared for construction, but the timeline for the project hasn’t been released yet.

“They have council’s approval to proceed anytime. How and when they tackle the different parts of construction is sort of their purview,” Loewen told CTV News on Thursday.

RELATED IMAGES

A 2021 concept drawing of the Nordic spa from Dream Developments. (Courtesy: City of Saskatoon)

A 2021 concept drawing of the Nordic spa from Dream Developments. (Courtesy: City of Saskatoon)

Source : CTV News

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