This artistic rendering shows the revised proposal for the redevelopment of Townley Lodge. Submitted

Townley Lodge plans head to public hearing next month

A subject of countless debates and commentaries that stretched over months, plans for the redevelopment of an affordable housing complex will head to public hearing Nov. 7.

Council earlier this week unanimously read for the first time a bylaw that rezones the site where the Greater Victoria Housing Society plans to redevelop Townley Lodge, an affordable housing complex that the Greater Victoria Housing Society (GVHS) has run since 1967. Council last month all but signed off on a development permit.

GVHS’ initial redevelopment proposal for Townley Lodge encountered resistance from residents in the area, leading to extensive negotiations between GVHS and community members over the final height and shape of the proposal that eventually culminated in the current proposal.

This process started almost exactly a year ago, after council had unanimously postponed a public hearing after GVHS had presented its initial redevelopment proposal. The society was planning to replace 39 low-income rental units for seniors with 67 affordable housing units for seniors, families and the disabled across four housing types, including a four-storey apartment building.

But stiff opposition from residents as well as the Camosun Community Association placed the project in limbo. Council’s decision drew criticism from an unusual coalition of business interests and social justice advocates. Several councillors countered this criticism by noting that council followed due process and that the proponent had failed to secure social licence from the neighbourhood.

Following the postponement, GVHS considered selling the property, then re-invest its proceeds into affordable housing projects elsewhere. However, the project received a renewed lease on life in the spring of 2017 following meetings between GVHS and neighbourhood leaders, and the revised proposal responds to the criticisms aired in late 2016.

Just Posted

Wait times for ICBC road tests increase in Victoria

Increase has no connection with tests becoming more challenging: ICBC

Smoking pot? Your dentist wants to know

Vancouver dentist and cannabis researcher shares oral health concerns of marijuana

Fall-ing for unseasonably warm weather in Victoria

Environment Canada forecast calls for sunshine through weekend

Hundreds of thousands of British Columbians to take part in earthquake drill

The B.C.-wide, one-and-a-half-minute drill will be held Thursday

Oak Bay High spearheads campaign to resurface Commonwealth Games training track

Community campaigns to revitalize Jack Wallace Memorial Track

Naked man jumping into Toronto shark tank a ‘premeditated’ stunt: official

The man swam in a tank at Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada

Advance voting begins Oct. 10 in Greater Victoria

The polls open at 8 a.m. for the 2018 municipal election with the general election taking place Oct. 20

Find your future at Black Press career fair in Victoria

More than 70 booths expected at Bay Street Armoury on Oct. 25

BCTF wins grievance over teacher shortage in public schools

Arbitrator found Chilliwack school district did not hire enough on-call teachers or librarians

Mt. Washington to open ZipTour

Multi-stage zipline is largest summer investment in resort’s history

Workers at BC Interior mill strike as negotiations resume in Kelowna

Picket lines went up at 4 a.m Tuesday, Oct. 16 at Tolko Lakeview Division in Williams Lake

Toronto Police ID B.C. man as naked shark tank jumper

David Weaver, of Nelson, is wanted on mischief and assault charges

In Florida, families seeking the missing amid storm damage

Five days after the hurricane slammed into the Florida Panhandle, people are struggling to locate friends and loved ones.

Prince Harry and Meghan start Aussie tour with baby gifts

Prince Harry and his wife Meghan are on a 16-day tour of Australia and the South Pacific.

Most Read