Links to the County's IDPs, ASPs and ACPs can be found below.
Municipal Development Plan (MDP)
The Foothills County Planning Department was tasked with implementation of the community's vision for the area we call home. That vision is determined through public consultation. In 2010 the Foothills County planning department worked with a steering committee made up of representatives from the public to review and update our Municipal Development Plan - the result of this process is MDP2010. This document outlines a comprehensive vision for the County addressing the type of development that is desired and some of the important characteristics of the area that members of the community feel are worth preserving and protecting.
The Vision for Foothills County, as stated in MDP2010, is as follows:
"The MD of Foothills encompasses a diverse rural landscape in which leadership and planning support a strong agricultural heritage, vibrant communities, a balanced economy and the stewardship of natural capital for future generations."
To uphold this vision the planning staff at the County develop statutory and non-statutory plans, policies and by-laws, which, once approved by Council assist in promoting orderly and beneficial long term growth, promoting and protecting the public interest and maintaining or improving the quality of the physical environment. Most times additional public consultation will be undertaken in the development of these plans policies and by-laws. Please see the County's Public Participation Policy for more information.
Planning staff at the County are also charged with the reviewing and processing of applications from landowners and developers for re-zoning, subdivision and development. Planning staff present the information to Council, who are charged with making decisions that are in the best interest of the municipality as a whole. It should be noted that planning staff do not advise or make recommendations to Council, and that it is Council that approves or refuses all applications.
Growth Management Strategy
Foothills County’s Growth Management Strategy (GMS) was adopted by resolution of Council in 2013. The goal of the GMS is to provide strategies for managing growth and development that build on the vision for the County that was described in the County’s Municipal Development Plan (MDP 2010).
The GMS divides the County into five growth management districts: the East District, the South Central District, the South West District, the North West District and the Central District, and describes a vision for the future for each district.
For details, refer to the Growth Management Strategy.
Intermunicipal Development Plans (IDPs)
Intermunicipal planning is an important component of keeping good relations with municipal neighbours.
The County currently is party to nine intermunicipal development plans (IDPs) with the City of Calgary, the Village of Longview, the Towns of Okotoks, Black Diamond / Turner Valley and High River, The M.D. of Willow Creek, the M.D. of Ranchland, Vulcan County and Wheatland County.
Area Structure Plan (ASP)
An Area Structure Plan (ASP) is a statutory plan, adopted by Bylaw which provides a framework for redesignation, subdivision and development of a specific area of land. Foothills County has over 50 approved ASPs to guide development in our hamlets, country residential developments, and commercial areas. The Municipal Government Act provides guidance on the preparation, adoption, and contents of ASPs.
Area Concept Plans (ACP)
Area Concept Plans (ACPs) and Outline Plans (Ops) are non-statutory plans that are used as a guideline for the subsequent redesignation, subdivision, and development of a specific area of land. These plans typically provide a higher level of detail than an Area Structure Plan in terms of the proposed land use concept and the actual subdivision design or lot layout.
Development Concept Plans (DCP)
DCPs are a new plan type for the MD the framework for which was laid out in the MDP2010. DCP's will be high level plans that are undertaken by the County. They will address the planning for large scale areas which are defined by similar landform and character.
While the focus of the DCP is to address planning to accommodate future growth, the DCP may instead be used to establish a landscape of conservation for the purposes of maintaining its natural capital.
The intent of a DCP is to provide reasonably broad direction and the appropriate level of detail dependant on the intensity of the development envisioned within the specific area.
There are no approved DCPs in the County at this time.