More residential and commercial space is being planned for Mission’s downtown core.
The proposal is for a six-storey, wood-framed, mixed-use residential building with 74 residential condo units, one storey of commercial space and two-and-a-half levels of underground parking.
The building would be located at 33281 Second Ave., adjacent to the Mission Library.
In order for the building to proceed, council will first have to create a new Core Commercial Downtown Two (CCD2) zone, which would allow for increased density, floor space and building height over what is currently permitted in the existing Core Commercial Downtown One (CCD1) zone.
“We have been talking for a long time about the densification of downtown,” said Mayor Randy Hawes.
He said creating this new zone will allow for the construction of more residential projects.
Council has already given first and second reading to the zoning change and decided to waive the need for a public hearing, which will allow them to grant third and final readings in the near future.
Only Coun. Jim Hinds voted against foregoing the public hearing.
Hawes said the public hearing can be waived because there have already been open houses regarding the project and the zoning change is “not major.”
He said council wants to expedite the change and make sure it happens.
“It’s a very important investment as far as we’re concerned.”
Hawes is hoping the building project is a signal that the “investment community is seeing a future here and I think as long as this project is constructed and is successful and sells and fills up, I would think it would interest others.”
This latest building project follows closely behind council’s commitment to invest $3.5 million into a First Avenue streetscape improvement project in the downtown core. The project will span three blocks, from Horne Street to Grand Street.
Hawes said when you put the streetscape improvement and the new building projects together, it could “spur much more investment in the downtown core.”
As for the other end of the downtown area, Hawes said council is still waiting for a construction project to move forward to renovate the old Bellevue Hotel.
A major facelift project has been proposed that would turn the rooms into self-contained mini apartments, but Hawes said environmental concerns have temporarily stalled the project.
“There was a gas station there where the liquor store end is now,” said Hawes, adding that the environmental concerns and possible remediation won’t be addressed quickly.