New development proposed for north Hatzic area

Staff provide information report to council on proposed 170-unit development.

Less than eight months after council rejected a proposed 230-home development in the north Hatzic area, a new plan with 60 fewer units has been submitted.

Staff provided an informational report Tuesday on the initial proposal, and council were told the developer expects to receive comments and submit a revised application within the next month.

The properties, at 8977 and 8980 Edwards Street, have been the subject of several failed proposals over the past decade.

Most recently, council denied by a vote of 4-3 a proposal to rezone land and modify the district’s Official Community Plan (OCP) in order to accommodate a 230-home development in January.

Now the city has received a second application, this one for a 170-lot development, plus a remaining lot with land to stay in the Agriculture Land Reserve. The plan has not yet come to council for a vote.

But the speed at which the process is going didn’t sit well with Coun. Jeff Jewell.

“We really are putting the cart before the horse,” Jewell said. “This is not a small matter Mr. Mayor. … This is likely to become an election issue.

Jewell said the district should focus on reforming its entire OCP, rather than potentially amending it for one particular development

While Jewell wanted a vote taken to quash the development, no action was taken, with other councillors open to hearing more information on the proposal.

District staff must also create a plan under Section 882 of the Local Government Act that considers the financial ramifications of such a large development.

The staff report suggests that running services to the development “will spur interest in further development in the area, whether suburban or urban, neither of which is currently envisioned by the OCP.”