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50-lot subdivision granted a development permit for Tower Road

After more than two decades, plans for a property in West Sechelt may be moving forward
Location of a Tower Road development in West Sechelt as seen from a 2017 aerial photo.

A West Sechelt property with a long history of plans for land development was granted a development permit last week.

Sechelt’s development planning manager Ian Holl presented the staff report regarding a proposed 50-lot subdivision on Tower Road to Sechelt council on March 15. He said the property has been through a number of ownership changes since the original rezoning application in 2011/2012. The staff report states this subdivision application process began in 2016 by proponents Felicity and Frank Fu, when a road closure and exchange process also began. 

The proposal outlines a phased approach to developing 50 strata lots and a dedicated park space at 6360 Tower Road, which fronts Tyler, Emerson and Reeves roads in West Sechelt. The lot sizes are proposed to range between 325 and 416 square metres. Five of the lots are dedicated for affordable housing as part of a housing agreement on the title made through a previous rezoning application more than a decade ago. Before that, it had been sitting at third reading since 2008, a Coast Reporter article from that time states. 

The application before council falls under three development permit areas (DPAs): 2, 5, and 8. DPA 8 requires council approval, and the scale of the proposal also exceeds the parameters of the other two areas. Staff consider the proposed subdivision and development to substantially meet the guidelines for DPA 8. 

The development cost charges (DCCs) are estimated to be approximately $1.3 million for the application. Other conditions of the subdivision are required for the applications to move toward final approval. 

Coun. Donna Bell asked whether the 50 lots would be a combination of rentals, to which staff said all 50 lots are for sale.

“There’s certainly a few positive that check the box for me in terms of their priority to the scale of housing,” Bell continued, mentioning the studio and two-bedroom options. 

Coun. Darren Inkster commented on his desire to have the form and character of the proposal presented, though he acknowledged it is not generally part of the DPA process. “I think we have the responsibility to encourage and or make sure that the end product looks good and looks good for Sechelt.”