Can I purchase or lease land adjacent to the Annex Dike that I have encroached on?

    In nearly every case, no.

    This flood mitigation project is grant funded, and the grant funding may be partially in jeopardy if we start adjusting the dike to suit encroaching property owners.

    Despite the impacts to individual properties that encroach, it is unfair to taxpayers to move a very expensive capital investment to avoid encroached areas.

    Residents must relocate any structures, landscaping, or fencing within their property lines as originally requested.

    The City will not sell land that provides access to dike flood responses and maintenance needs or adjust the dike design to accommodate encroachments.

    What happens to fences on my property lines?

    Heavy equipment, maintenance crews, and inspectors always require full access to the dike despite this need being intermittent and sometimes not needed for many years. If fences encroach and impede this access, they must be either removed or moved back onto private property. The City will work with individual property owners to determine if it is possible to accommodate requests to keep such fences while ensuring the safety and protection of the public and property.

    What is the setback, and will vehicles be driven near my fence?

    The setback is the space required by Provincial standards and the Inspector of Dikes for approvals, and for practical reasons such as minimizing costs of construction and ensuring access for inspections and maintenance in the future. This means property owners need to ensure the setback area defined for the Dike is clear and free of any items and that they are not encroaching into this area.

    Property lines have been staked as part of this project and property owners should be fully aware of their property boundaries and keep private use within their private property.

    What will this look like when it’s done, and how long will construction last?

    The City has reviewed 90% designs with the engineers designing the Dike. We will host individual meetings with impacted property owners, a dike walk for anyone interested, and publish online public information to share the final designs and discuss improvements and materials.

    This project will deliver a Dike and trial system that improves on the technical function and flood protection, and the aesthetic and accessibility of the park and trail system. There will be public engagement regarding design elements and the special features along the trail system in the future as this project advances.

    Why has a boat launch been added to the design?

    While the boat launch will be considered, it is a optional discretionary element. The parking configuration as originally proposed has been removed from the scope of work.

    The 2013 Leisure Service Master Plan included eight recommendations for future development of Fernie’s Annex Park.

    Based on these recommendations, the City of Fernie has advanced work on the following improvements:

    Recommendation: “Integrate services for festival parking and access from 11th street, including two additional bridges. Consider permanent washroom facilities and water supply.”

    Action: In 2019 a pit toilet was installed, and a wider, more robust bridge was constructed.

    Recommendation: “Improve picnic area. Incorporate covered picnic shelter for 50 people.”

    Action: Construction of the Annex Park Pavilion is set to begin the week of November 1, 2021.

    Recommendation: “Formalize the Park as three district zones, and improve trail conditions: integrate primary paved trail, secondary trail with ample seating.”

    Action: Design and paving of the dike has been incorporated into the 90% design of the Annex Dike Improvements Project.

    Recommendation: “Create non-motorized boat launch for kayaks and canoes at the northern end of the Annex Park. Consider vehicle access.”

    Action: A boat launch has been incorporated into the 90% design of the Annex Dike Improvements Project to be considered as an optional discretionary element.

    Improvements to the Annex Dike are still in the design phase, with 90% of the design complete. This means structural designs of the Dike has been finalized by engineers, and we're now working to refine features, enhancements, and discretionary items not critical to the structure, such as wellness stations, a hand launch, landscaping etc.

    A complete version of the 90% design drawings can be viewed in the 'documents' section of this project page.