About the Verte Homesteader Development
The Homesteader infill site includes lands where Domtar Inc. operated a former wood processing facility. Domtar’s operations ceased in 1987. Domtar conducted remediation work on the site and the Greenbelt in the 1990s, which also included extensive testing. This work was undertaken with knowledge and oversight of Alberta Environment.
The infill development site includes Parcel C and Parcel Y, which will be redeveloped for residential use. An undeveloped berm separates Verte Homesteader from the CN mainline and serves as a safety and noise and attenuation barrier. A parcel of land referred to as the Greenbelt is adjacent to the site and is owned by the City of Edmonton.
In 2009, Cherokee, a property developer specializing in the development of brownfield sites, submitted a remedial action plan that was accepted by Alberta Environment for redevelopment of the site for residential purposes. On that basis, Cherokee acquired the site for redevelopment in 2010.
Cherokee submitted an updated plan to Alberta Environment in 2011 that was also accepted by Alberta Environment. Cherokee then began further environmental testing, assessment and remediation work.
In 2013, Alberta Environment issued a Remediation Certificate for Parcel C to Cherokee after it reviewed data showing that the soil and groundwater met the Province of Alberta’s standards for residential use. Based on the Remediation Certificate, Alberta Environment approved Parcel C as the first phase for residential development. The Remediation Certificate also enabled the City of Edmonton to approve the zoning and subdivision applications for Parcel C allowing development to begin.
Starting in late 2016, Alberta Environment and Parks has issued numerous orders against Cherokee and Domtar demanding more testing of Parcels Y and X despite its initial approval and despite the fact that dozens of environmental reports including over 800 soil samples had been provided to the Government over the decades by both Domtar and later Cherokee.
PARCEL C EXEMPT
Parcel C has not been included in any Government orders requiring additional testing.
Despite repeated requests since 2015 by Cherokee to meet with the Province’s Compliance Staff to address the issue of further testing on Parcels Y and X, Alberta Environment and Parks has refused to do so.
Cherokee and Domtar have appealed all of the orders issued by Alberta Environmental and Parks to the Alberta Environmental Appeals Board to have an independent expert body decide the matter.
Letter to Homeowners (Delivered March 23, 2018)