Clarion development on the clock in Qualicum Beach

Permit for controversial condo project next to town hall expires July 13

The people behind the controversial Clarion development in downtown Qualicum Beach have just over two weeks to apply for a building permit before their second development permit runs out and they are back at square one.

As recently as December, the project was on track. “We’re working with the town, we have construction drawings and the work is out to tender,” said Bill Katerenchuk, co-owner and developer of the empty lot behind town hall.

Katerenchuk died on May 7, but according to councillor Bill Luchtmeijer, “his investment partner Wayne Strandlund has been in town and  plans to go ahead with the existing plans,” for which they have all the engineering drawings complete.

Strandlund, the Victoria-based chancellor of Royal Roads University and founder of Fisgard Capital, could not be reached for comment.

Luchtmeijer estimated the owners have spent hundreds of thousands on the project and “the previous council changed the rules for them, changing building heights and putting in incentives,” he said, suggesting the current council may not approve a third development permit.

Good for two years, council approved the second permit for a 53-unit, five-storey condo development in July, 2013. It expires July 13 unless the building permit application is filed.

Before the composition changed in November’s municipal election, town council supported the project 3-2.

The building permit is the final step required, which is reviewed by staff on technical grounds. The town’s director of planning could not be reached for comment.

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