Parksville council has given the go-ahead for a development variance for this property at 272 Island Highway W., owned by Radcliffe Development Corp. — Adam Kveton

Parksville council advances development variance

Neighbouring properties to be asked for input

A five-storey, mixed-use development project along Highway 19A in Parksville took a step forward Monday when Parksville city council authorized staff to provide notice of council’s intent to consider a variance permit reducing its required number of off-street parking spaces.

A concurrent development permit application for the property, to be called 100 Lombardy, is expected to come before council for approval after final consideration of issuance of the variance, said Blaine Russell, director of community planning. The property is a vacant lot, across Lombardy Street from the McDonald’s restaurant, zoned for commercial and mixed use.

The city will now send out direct-mail notice to property owners and tenants within 50 metres of the proposed project site. Input from those notices will be brought back to council for final consideration of the variance, most likely at council’s June 19 meeting, Russell said.

The variance permit application was brought by Garwin Wuerch of Radcliffe Development Corp., the owner of the property at 272 Island Highway W. Prior to the council vote, Wuerch presented a detailed overview of the project, which would be made up of commercial space on the ground floor, mixed commercial and multi-unit housing on the second floor, and multi-unit housing on the top three floors.

In all, it would contain nearly 6,500 square feet of commercial space and 29 housing units “for singles, families and seniors,” said Wuerch.

Under the city’s zoning and development bylaw 1994, No. 2000, the project would have required 64 parking spaces based on its floor area and number of residential units. Radcliffe has requested a variance that would reduce the total by 11 spaces, to 53.

The variance would also permit a loading space on Lombardy Street and would waive the requirement for an off-street loading zone.

The proposed parking would included 35 spots in an underground parkade and 18 more surface slots. The Radcliffe Development project proposal is for a registered and certified Built Green building, with a West Coast design featuring large windows, overhanging cover at street level and extensive landscaping throughout the .354 ha property extending from Highway 19A to Morison Avenue.

Staff recommended council require a $58,968 landscaping security, upon approval of the project, based on the applicant’s cost estimate.

There will be other economic benefits to the city, Wuerch said in his presentation. Noting the 2016 taxation for the vacant property was $13,700 in 2016, Wuerch said the completed development would generate approximately $140,000 in total tax revenue.

As the project would be built on a site that supported a hotel and restaurant until 2008, roads and utility access already exist and will not create costs to the city, Wuerch noted.