Qualicum Beach council has granted Pheasant Glen an amendment to the Official Community Plan and zoning, to permit a 225-unit residential development that would allow tourists and year-round accommodations.
Town council, at its regular meeting on Wednesday morning, Oct. 27, discussed the project at length and raised some concerns before voting on the project.
The development, located on 1025 Qualicum Rd., proposes 185 units for either residential dwellings or tourists accommodations, and 40 units to be used as daily, weekly or monthly rentals. The major project will be done in phases.
Phase one includes a clubhouse, brew pub or tap house, a minimum of 40 units in the form of a lodge, hotel, stacked condominium; a minimum of 60 units in the form of villas and/or cottages; and a blanket easement for connecting trails.
Coun. Teunis Westbroek recommended some amendments that included removing the word ‘minimum’ on the proposed 60 units as he feels the numbers could go higher than that. He wants the number to be definite at 60 units, which council endorsed. Coun. Robert Filmer voted against.
Westbroek also wanted to make sure council will have the opportunity to review the actual site plans as they’ve already seen several iterations of the proposal over the years.
“I think it would be prudent for us and public and the members to know what exactly are we looking at,” said Westbroek.
Westbroek made another motion that the bylaw entitled ‘Town of Qualicum Beach Land Use and Subdivision Bylaw No. 580, 1999 Amendment (1025 Qualicum Road) Bylaw No.123, 2021’ be adopted and further that no subdivision of the land can occur until council has approved a site plan that identifies the general location of cottages, villas, the clubhouse and other amenities unless such subdivision is consistent with the land use concept site plan that was included in the Jan. 13, 2021 council agenda. It passed 3-2 with Filmer and Coun. Anne Skipsey opposed.
“All the multi-family stuff and the clubhouse, all has to comeback to council,” said Mayor Brian Wiese. “That’s just the way it works. All those will come back to council for approval.”
CAO Daniel Sailland also explained before a development permit can be issued, any building construction will have to go before council for consideration and approval.
“If council is not satisfied with the proposal at the time, there will be no obligation to approve it,” said Sailland.
Skipsey indicated she is unable to support the current proposal because of ambiguity on the provision of tourist accommodations.
“There’s no certainly in the first 60 units that tourist accommodations would be provided,” said Skipsey. “And I also think it lacks clarification as to when the development will be connected with the town utility as far as sanitary sewer.”
Filmer indicated he reviewed the public hearing held earlier this year and believes some residents favoured the development because they had the impression the development is going to be strictly a hotel.
“Other people think we’re getting a Tigh-Na-Mara,” said Filmer. “It’s not really a Tigh-Na-Mara, either. We’re getting a mixed of sure monthly rentals and a different mix of probably a very, very fancy Chartwell. And I cannot support that. When we talked about tourism accommodation and needing hotels, this isn’t a hotel. I get very frustrated when people are saying this is a hotel and it’s going to be great.”
Filmer said he supports a resort and tourist accommodations but strongly feels that’s not what the developer is presenting.
Bill Dutton of Pheasant Glen Golf Resort is investing between $80 million to $90 million on the project and expects the town to receive $4.5 million in development cost charges. He also pointed out it will add $1.5 million per year to the town’s tax revenue.
“I want to extend my deepest gratitude to all our members past and present, the community, and golfers from near and far for their support over the last 25 years,” said Dutton. “It has been a great adventure and I hope we get the opportunity to continue working with the community to build a first-rate destination golf resort in Qualicum Beach.”