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Public hearing to be held for 25-unit Squamish townhouse development

District council unanimously passes two readings of Squamish EcoVille Ltd.'s Loggers East Finch Drive project.
Real estateSquamish EcoVille Ltd
Rendering of the Squamish EcoVille Ltd proposal.

The public will soon have a chance to voice their opinions on a new townhouse development that is bound for the Loggers East neighbourhood.

On May 17, council unanimously gave two readings to a proposed zoning amendment for 1039 Finch Drive.

The proponent is Squamish EcoVille Ltd.

As a result, the proposed project is now scheduled for a public hearing on June 21.

The amendment would change the land, currently zoned as rural residential RL-1 to a comprehensive development zone CD-102.

If the amendment succeeds, this would pave the way for the construction of 25 townhomes.

There are expected to be a couple of two-bedroom units and 23 three-bedroom units.

Two units are expected to be secured as affordable rental housing, and two others will be market rentals.

About 41% of the lot area will be in an environmental protection area and enhanced to improve the riparian habitat, according to a staff report.

The report says about 13% of the lot area is proposed to be activated as publicly accessible park space and a trail. A total of 54% of the lot area would be either enhanced and preserved for environmental protection or be activated as publicly accessible park space.

There is also a proposal for a public basketball court in the area.

Finally, on the environmental side, the proponent is committing to build the units for net-zero energy operational use. The roof of each unit will have photovoltaic panels to generate power.

These are panels that are installed for the conversion of thermal energy into electricity.

Staff say this exceeds Step 5 of the BC Energy Step Code.

All on council supported the project.

"It's not exact, [but] I think in this case, we ended up with 54% of the lot [being] put over to park or recreation area, conservation area. And I think that's quite appropriate in this case," Coun. Doug Race said.

Coun. Chris Pettingill supported the proposal, but had some concerns with garage space.

"I do still have some concern about the idea that we would require every garage to fit a giant truck, given our goals of moving away from that sort of dependence," Pettingill said.

Coun. Armand Hurford said that he'd throw his support behind the project, as it does meet District policies.

Mayor Karen Elliott said she appreciated the rental portion of the project. She also had comments regarding the garage sizes.

"Appreciate the changes around the garage height for when we have electric trucks, not just diesel trucks," said Elliott. "They'll be tall too. And also [I appreciate] the attention to the public realm and what can be shared in this neighbourhood and so on."

The public hearing planned for June 21 at 6 p.m. at Municipal Hall in council chambers. There will also be an option to participate via online web conference.


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