Parksville council gave first reading to a zoning and development bylaw amendment for a proposed 116-unit, multi-family housing development near Wembley Mall.
The developer, Highstreet Ventures, hopes to build two four-storey residential buildings at the intersection of Wembley Road and Church Road, across the street from the mall.
If the amendment is passed by council, the 1.04-hectare property at 413 Wembley Rd. will be rezoned from its current single-family residential to high-density residential. The developer must provide an opportunity for public engagement, such as a public open house, prior to consideration of second reading.
The development is planned to be powered 100 per cent by electricity, largely drawn from on-site solar panels, which cover about three-quarters of the buildings’ roofs, according to a presentation by Eric Delorme, development manager, during council’s July 4 regular meeting.
It is planned to meet Step 4 of the BC Energy Step Code, an optional compliance path in the BC Building Code local governments may use to incentivize or require a level of energy efficiency in new construction that goes above and beyond the building code requirements.
Delorme said Highstreet wants to encourage alternative transportation by making the property a walkable area with paths, bike parking and a commercial grade bike pump and workstands for maintenence.
The plan is to preserve as many of the site’s trees as possible, according to Delorme’s presentation. He added that studies done by an arborist working with Highstreet found the health of the tree stand is in decline and there are many fallen trees.
As for whether the proposed units will be for rent or purchase, Delorme said that cannot be determined until they are ready for the market.