Mission townhouse development wins approval on second go-around

New proposal puts restricted covenant on coach houses to prevent renters

Ben Kruger speaks during public hearing Monday evening as developer Rick Redekop (far right) looks on.

A $30-million townhouse development at Cedar Street and Tunbridge Avenue unanimously passed third reading at public hearing Monday, overturning a previous council decision.

The original development called for 38 townhouses and 21 single family homes with coach houses on a parcel of land south of Machell Street, west of Cedar, but was defeated 5-2 during public hearing March 26. Parking issues, increased traffic, roadway and laneway widths, a lack of parkland, and secondary suites were the primary concerns voiced from residents and politicians.

But following a special request for reconsideration from Mayor Ted Adlem on April 2, developer Rick Redekop spoke with the planning department to hammer out a new proposal.

“We tried to do whatever we could to make it a better process for everybody,” said Redekop after the hearing, adding he felt he covered the main worries, including that potential secondary suites would increase neighbourhood density without the additional tax benefit.

The new plan puts a restricted covenant on the coach houses that prevents renters, and the single-family homes will not be allowed exterior access to basement suites.

Those changes are expected to address some of the density issues, although the revised proposal contains the same density of 59 units. However, the planning department notes the official community plan (OCP) designation already provides a minimum density of 67 units and a maximum of 174.

Lone opponent Ben Kruger made three requests that be believed would mollify residents, including eliminating the Cedar Street median to allow for a left-turn entry so traffic is reduced on Machell, removing the basements altogether, and installing a large sandbox for children.

“I still don’t like postage stamp-sized lots, but I don’t have to live in one if I don’t want to,” said Coun. Dave Hensman, adding the changes, while not perfect, allowed him to support the project.

The townhomes are expected to range from $260,000 to $300,000, with the single-family homes going for $400,000 to $450,000, depending on market conditions.

The developer must still submit a community amenity contribution of $163,270, among other requirements from the municipality, and authorization from senior levels of government regarding the environmentally sensitive areas before the project can be adopted.