Fairwinds in Nanoose Bay has been sold

Aside from what's there now, the development has zoning approval that could result in a doubling of the population of Nanoose Bay

Details are scarce, but the Fairwinds development in Nanoose Bay has been sold.

“There is a sale agreement in place,” Fairwinds general manager Jim Olsen said Tuesday. “Beyond that, I really can’t comment.”

Olsen said more details about the sale might be available in “days, not week.”

News of the sale was buzzing around Nanoose Bay on Tuesday morning.

“We are pleased to share an exciting development regarding the sale of Fairwinds,” the president of the Fairwinds Community Association wrote in an e-mail to members on Tuesday obtained by The NEWS. “Although details aren’t being released until the formal confirmation of sale, we anticipate these coming soon and will get them out to everyone as soon as they are available. Personally, I think this is very good news for Fairwinds, especially if the new owners go ahead with the development.”

The now-former owners, an investment management firm called bcIMC, put the development up for sale in October of last year.

Fairwinds has 700 homes, a championship golf course, private fitness centre, trails and a full-service marina. Perhaps more importantly, the development has zoning approval for an additional 287 hectares, which could double the population of Nanoose Bay to more than 11,000 people in 20 years.

In May of this year, Regional District of Nanaimo officials said any sale of the property would not affect the zoning.

“In the long and short of it nothing changes,” said RDN general manager of strategic and community development Geoff Garbutt.

The development project has been on the table for about seven years and plans a range of residential housing types and densities, regional and community parks and trails, local commercial shops and services, a mixed-use village and marina. A Phased Development Agreement (PDA) was adopted by the RDN last summer.

“The sale of Fairwinds to some future owner has nothing to do with the zoning in place and it’s actually the reason why the legislation (PDA) was adopted… for certainty between the developer and local government over the long term,” Garbutt said in May. “It outlines their responsibilities.”

— with files from Candace Wu