Rural Alberta residents rally against proposed race track development

Rural Alberta residents push back against proposed race track project

“The Battle of Rosebud: Local Landowners vs. Motorsport Dream”

The serene rolling hills leading to the picturesque hamlet of Rosebud are a sight to behold. However, amidst the beauty lies a simmering conflict that has divided the community for over a decade. At the heart of the issue is the proposed Badlands Motorsports Resort, a $500-million racing park that has sparked a fierce battle between local landowners and a motorsport family determined to make their dream a reality.

The Dream of Badlands Motorsports Resort

In 2006, Badlands Motorsports Resort acquired 194 hectares of land along the Rosebud River valley with a plan to build a state-of-the-art racing park for street-legal machines. The ambitious project includes multiple racetracks, a go-kart track, a hotel, and condominiums, aimed at attracting racing enthusiasts from near and far.

Local Opposition and Concerns

However, not everyone in Rosebud is thrilled about the prospect of a racing park in their backyard. Wendy Clark, a long-time resident of the hamlet, expressed her frustration, stating, “I am angry that we have to put our community through this. It should never have gotten this far.” Many local landowners share her sentiment, citing concerns about the environmental impact of the project and the loss of natural habitat for wildlife.

On the other side of the debate are a group of doctors led by Dr. Jay Zelazo, who see the racing park as a much-needed addition to the area. They have faced obstacles and unexpected costs along the way, but remain determined to see their vision come to life.

Environmental Concerns and Conservation Efforts

Opponents of the project have raised valid concerns about the impact on local wildlife, particularly on bird species like bank swallows, eagles, hawks, and falcons. The Alberta Environmental Appeals Board dismissed some of these concerns for lack of evidence, but called for additional environmental monitoring and mitigation measures to protect the wetlands in the area.

Looking Towards the Future

As the battle rages on, both sides remain steadfast in their convictions. Local landowners are open to a fair offer to purchase the land from Badlands Motorsports Resort, while the motorsport family is determined to see their dream realized. The possibility of a court battle looms on the horizon, with the potential for a judicial review of the environmental board’s decision.

In the end, the fate of Rosebud hangs in the balance, caught between progress and preservation. As the community grapples with conflicting interests and values, one thing remains certain – the Battle of Rosebud is far from over.



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