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Eight-lot subdivision proposal in West Sechelt receives third reading

Highland Builders is proposing an eight-lot subdivision at 5476 Mills Road
The site of the future development along Mills Road.

The Sechelt development that is navigating the murky waters of the coming provincial Small-Scale Multi-Unit Housing (SSMUH) initiative received its third reading during Sechelt council’s March 6 regular meeting.

Highland Builders’ proposal for an eight-lot subdivision at 5476 Mills Road was last seen at the Feb. 21 regular meeting, where it received its second reading; since then, the applicants have confirmed that they will proceed with the community amenity contribution (CAC).

The CAC will include $160,000 that will be evenly split between the Community Amenity and the Affordable Housing Reserve Funds.

Development planning manager Ian Holl clarified that the proposed zone has a minimum lot size of 300 square meters, which is the bare minimum that each lot must meet. 

“They could propose some lots that are 300, some that are 400, one that's 1,000. That's up to them to determine how they want to break up the property,” he said.   

Holl added that because it's a vacant lot with no existing dwellings, it is a good candidate to implement the small-scale multi-unit housing type zoning. 

Coun. Dianne McLauchlan asked if it was advisable to put a set dollar amount on the CAC, being wary that development may not start for a number of years, saying that in five years’ time the district may have an entirely different CAC formula. 

Holl answered that one way the district approaches covenants like this is accounting for inflation.

“If for some reason, the first building permits don't come for five years, that'll be $5,000 times the inflation for that five-year period and that can be written into the covenant,” Holl said. 

Council gave Zoning Amendment Bylaw 580-11, 2024 third reading with McLauchlan opposed. Coun. Alton Toth was absent from the meeting. 

The next stage for the development will be for the bylaw amendment to be sent to the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure for approval. The covenant will also need to be registered on title before the development is presented to council for adoption, Holl explained. 

Jordan Copp is the Coast Reporter’s civic and Indigenous affairs reporter. This reporting beat is made possible by the Local Journalism Initiative.