Seniors' project overcomes hurdle
A proposed seniors’ complex is moving through the approval process, but some opposition exists.
On Monday, council gave two readings to a bylaw that would allow for a 37-unit seniors-oriented apartment in the 3900 block of 30th and 29th avenues.
Coun. Buffy Baumbrough voted against changing land use designation from residential small lot to residential medium density.
“I’m not in opposition to the development but I am opposed to where it is located,” she said of the West Vernon neighbourhood.
“We have a small percentage of lots designated small lots in the community and they are important to provide diverse housing.”
Baumbrough is concerned that if there are fewer properties in the small lot designation, the options for affordable housing are reduced.
Staff had originally recommended the application be denied because they believe it is contrary to the city’s official community plan.
“Only 0.4 per cent of the lands within the municipal boundary are designated as residential small lot,” stated a staff report.
“This form and type of housing was identified as an important component to meet the housing needs of families. Having smaller lots and smaller homes increases affordability without subsidies while still providing a traditional form of housing to meet the needs of families.”
However, a majority of council opted to take the matter to the public for input before deciding whether the development will proceed.
“I saw no reason why this should not go forward to a public hearing where we could get input from the immediate neighbourhood on whether this would be a desired location for the proposed development,” said Coun. Bob Spiers.
Besides seniors-oriented housing, the project could include four commercial units.
“There could be a small store or health and personal services,” said Cleo Corbett, the city’s long range planner.