Victoria city council briefs

• Rental trade agreement reached

While developers typically can’t stratify a rental building in Victoria, the rules can be flexible with the right incentive.

Last year, Casa Projects eventually convinced a weary city planning staff to grant an exception to the rule, by offering to secure one rooming house and build another. It seems the road has now been paved for similar deals.

A new applicant has been granted permission to stratify an apartment at 1015 Moss St. into eight condo units, and designate it as a heritage building. In June 2008, the building caught fire, suffering significant damage to the attic.

In exchange for the allowance, the applicant will secure six new rental units at 1030 Cook St, also to be designated heritage.

• Permanent second urinal postponed

The first permanent downtown urinal was such a success it won an international design award. Plans for a second, however, have been delayed.

City council approved an expenditure of $32,000 to continue the city’s practice of deploying four removable Kros urinals during the summer months, until the permanent urinal is installed.

According to the Downtown Victoria Business Association’s clean team, they’ll be needed.

In a recent letter to city council, the DVBA’s Ken Kelly noted concerns over public urination are ongoing, and especially prevalent around Bastion Square.

• No change to park washroom hours

In other washroom news, a council subcommittee nixed the idea of extending park washroom facilities because the cost is too great.

Currently, the city maintains 17 public washrooms in parks during daylight hours at a cost of $500,000 per year. Expanded the service from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. would add $125,000 to the bottom line.

• Gorge housing approved … again

Council first approved a 52-unit affordable housing project in late 2010. Once excavation began, however, a slight reconfiguration of the parking lot revealed the need to reduce the number of stalls promised by grand total of one.

The rejig triggered the need for a whole new rezoning and development permit application, complete with public hearing. Nobody showed up, said Kaye Melliship of the Greater Victoria Housing Society, which will operate the building, at 15-21 Gorge Rd. East, once finished.

Council approved the new development permit (with 56 parking stalls rather than 57) Thursday. Construction at the old Capri motel site continues and is due for completion by the end of the year.

• Second garden suite proposal scrapped

Council has denied an application to build a garden suite on a corner lot, at 1334 Pembroke St.

Since adopting its draft garden suite policy, council has reviewed two applications. It approved the first, in the Topaz area.

City planning staff, however, deemed the Pembroke lot too small to justify the size of the garden suite proposed. The next door neighbour opposed the application, siting concerns over lost privacy.

• Cycling Festival scores cash

City council approved a one-time $20,000 grant for the Victoria International Cycling Festival.

The inaugural festival runs from May 27 to June 12 and features a bike rally, a mountain bike skills competition, cycling tours and other events for the family. The grant will be used for policing ($15, 000) and rental equipment ($5,000).

• On second thought, no stream

Phase two of Fisherman’s Wharf Park improvements will not include daylighting a stream, as originally envisioned.

The stream currently travels through pipes underground, and new analysis by the city parks department reveals that bringing it to the surface will cost too much and present too many risks.

Instead, parks staff will proceed with a rain garden to absorb storm water and filter it naturally. The $600,000 cost will also include new trees and shrubs, walkways, a rock wall and seating.

• Theatre Alley reborn in the Union

Council gave Anthem Properties the go ahead to develop the fenced-off Chinatown lot fronting Fisgard Street and Pandora Avenue.

A five-storey mixed-use development at 517 Fisgard, called the Union, will feature a mid-block pedestrian alleyway, dubbed Theatre Alley for the walkway once leading to the Chinese opera. It was also incorporate the lone remnant of a fire which destroyed much of the heritage building on the former Buckerfields lot. The partial brick wall, currently supported by braces, will be rehabilitated.

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

James Taylor, a Saanich resident and member of the Curve Lake First Nation, walked all over Greater Victoria on May 5 in honour of Red Dress Day and the National Day of Awareness for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. (Devon Bidal/News staff)
Indigenous man walks Greater Victoria to honour missing and murdered women and girls

James Taylor, of the Curve Lake First Nation, marks Red Dress Day with healing walk, songs

A man who allegedly spat at and yelled racial slurs at an Asian family was arrested for hate-motivated assault Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
Man arrested for allegedly spitting, yelling anti-Asian racial slurs at a mother and kids

The man was arrested for hate-motivated assault near Quadra Elementary School Tuesday

Victoria police is asking for the public’s assistance in identifying this suspect after they allegedly robbed a Douglas Street bank on Tuesday. (Photo courtesy of VicPD)
Police seek identity of suspect who alllegedly robbed Victoria bank

Officers were called to a bank in the 1000-block of Douglas Street just after 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday

Victoria police said Wednesday that they continue to look for Belinda Ann Cameron, who was last seen on May 5, 2005. (Photo courtesy of VicPD)
Victoria police still looking for Belinda Cameron who was last seen 16 years ago

Cameron was reported missing on June 4, 2005, and her case is deemed suspicious

Colwood-based writer Esi Edugyan will speak about the deep research she did before writing <em>Washington Black</em>, her third novel. (Black Press Media file photo)
Colwood author Esi Edugyan giving talk May 6 about her research and writing process

Event is part of Royal Road’s Changemaker series celebrating its 25th anniversary

Jose Marchand prepares Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination doses at a mobile clinic for members of First Nations and their partners, in Montreal, Friday, April 30, 2021. The National Advisory Committee on Immunization is coming under fire after contradicting the advice Canadians have been receiving for weeks to take the first vaccine against COVID-19 that they’re offered. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Trudeau says he is glad he got AstraZeneca, vaccines are only way out of pandemic

‘The most important thing is to get vaccinated with the first vaccine offered to you’

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of May 4

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(Black Press Media file photo)
POLL: Do you plan to travel on the Victoria Day long weekend?

It’s the unofficial start to the summer season. A time of barbecues,… Continue reading

B.C.’s provincial health officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Dip in COVID-19 cases with 572 newly announced in B.C.

No new deaths have been reported but hospitalized patients are up to 481, with 161 being treated in intensive care

Protesters attempt to stop clear-cutting of old-growth trees in Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew. (Will O���Connell photo)
Clash between loggers, activists halts forestry operations over Fairy Creek

Forest license holders asking for independent investigation into incident

The courthouse in Nanaimo, B.C. (News Bulletin file)
Island man sentenced in Nanaimo after causing a dog unnecessary pain and suffering

Kiefer Tyson Giroux, 26, of Nanoose Bay, given six-month sentence

Following a one-year pause due to the pandemic, the Snowbirds were back in the skies over the Comox Valley Wednesday (May 5) morning. Photo by Erin Haluschak
Video: Snowbirds hold first training session in Comox Valley in more than 2 years

The team will conduct their training from May 4 to 26 in the area

Solar panels on a parking garage at the University of B.C. will be used to separate water into oxygen and hydrogen, the latter captured to supply a vehicle filling station. (UBC video)
UBC parkade project to use solar energy for hydrogen vehicles

Demonstration project gets $5.6M in low-carbon fuel credits

Most Read