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Eagleview Heights clears first reading

Eagle View Heights
An artist's rendering of the proposed Eagle View Heights development in Gibsons.

Councillors in Gibsons have given first reading to zoning amendments for a large development at 464 Eaglecrest Drive.

The Eagleview Heights project, by TCD Developments, would see the property developed in three sections with a total of 87 units. It requires rezoning from Single Family Residential Zone 1 (R-1) to Cluster Residential Zone 2 (RCL-2).

Director of planning Lesley-Ann Staats told councillors at the March 20 meeting that two minor changes were made since the bylaw was before committee: clearer wording on density, so it matches the Official Community Plan (OCP) definition, and a specific “floor space ratio” definition.

Staats explained that the floor space ratio – the ratio of the total floor area of buildings to the area of a lot – was needed because the OCP doesn’t spell out how it should be calculated for that neighbourhood. 

Floor space ratio has been at the heart of some of the questions raised by neighbouring residents as the application has moved through the process, and several of those residents were also at the council meeting.

William Baker of the O’Shea – Oceanmount Community Association said the floor space ratio definition suggested for the bylaw would create a density that is more than 80 per cent greater than the density envisioned in the OCP. “That would ordinarily require an OCP amendment,” he said.

Resident Greig Soohen raised another issue that’s come up before – traffic and pedestrian safety. He said the neighbourhood would like to see installation of a sidewalk along Eaglecrest between Oceanmount and O’Shea included as part of the development conditions. “There’s an existing sidewalk on the same side of Eaglecrest Drive that currently ends abruptly right opposite where the new proposed development would be located,” he noted.

As well as giving the bylaw first reading, council approved a public information meeting for April 4. Previous information meetings were run by the developer. This will be the first sponsored by the Town with planning staff available to answer questions.

Coun. Stafford Lumley asked if the affordable housing and community amenities proposal for the development would be ready in time for that meeting.

Staats said her department planned to have them ready before any consideration of second reading and an eventual public hearing, but details would not be available for the information meeting.

The April 4 information meeting will be held from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the council chambers on South Fletcher Road.

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