Ken Milbrath from Pemberton Trail (left) Mike Miller, Founder & CEO, Abstract Developments, Rus Collins, Zebra Group, Will Krzymowski, Cascadia Architects and Kyle Ryan, COO, Abstract Developments put shovels to the ground Tuesday morning as the construction of the Bellewood development begins. (Submitted/Abstract)

Construction begins at former Truth Centre site

The Bellewood Park residential development on Fort Street is now underway

Shovels hit the ground at 1201 Fort St. on Tuesday morning, signaling the start of construction on the contentious Bellewood Park development.

The 83-unit, $100 million condo and townhouse project will take up half of the two-acre property in the form of a six-storey and four-storey condo development as well as a townhouse complex facing Pentrelew Place.

The property used to hold the Victoria Truth Centre, and faced protests from residents who were against the loss of greenspace.

READ MORE: Hearing for Truth Centre site development cut short by emergency

After a lengthy debate, Victoria City Council gave the development the green-light in May 2018 with the condition that the project developer, Abstract, build 10 below-market affordable units – five for “low-income” and five for “moderate-income” tenants– at another one of its projects at 1010 Fort St.

Abstract CEO Mike Miller said since the approval went forward there’s been relatively little protest.

“There are a couple straggles, but it’s all been good,” Miller said. “We’ve maintained all but one significant Garry oak tree, and there will be 125 trees when it’s all done as well as over an acre which will remain open site space.”

ALSO READ: Abstract prepares to transform Fort/Pentrelew property

A public walkway, which will be an extension of the Pemberton Trail, will also run through the complex.

So far, over 50 per cent of the units have sold.

Since the property was sold, the Victoria Truth Centre moved to a new location at 2815 Cedar Hill Road.

nicole.crescenzi@vicnews.com


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