Commercial, residential development to be split in Ville Giroux
Developer says separating buildings more marketable
| Posted: Wednesday, Sep 18, 2013 06:00 am
In Ville Giroux Urban Village, the commercial and residential buildings won’t be combined after all.
On Monday night, council approved amendments to the Ville Giroux Area Structure Plan and the Land Use Bylaw following a public hearing. The amendments switch parcels beside and south of the Fire Station No. 3 along Giroux Road and Versailles Avenue from mixed use commercial and residential to separate commercial and residential zones instead of integrating the commercial and residential buildings. The residential area will be zoned for medium density.
The amendments also corrected what senior planner Lenore Mitchell said was a “map error” from previous years, changing the land just behind the fire hall from medium-high density residential to medium residential, which is what it was supposed to be, she said.
Jonathan Lay was there to represent developer Genstar during the public hearing, and said splitting commercial and residential development would make the development more marketable.
“We’ve had a huge amount of interest in having a separate commercial site,” Lay said. He suggested that vertically integrating residential and commercial could be a saleable development elsewhere, but Ville Giroux is the wrong spot.
The commercial development will provide services for surrounding neighbourhoods like North Ridge and Lacombe Park, Lay said.
Mitchell told council there’s an increase to the number of dwelling units, with 96 expected, but a loss of commercial space, estimating the commercial space will be about 5,000 square metres less than originally planned for. The land use bylaw amendment also changed the commercial designation so that permitted and discretionary uses like gas bars and drive-thru businesses could be part of the development.
Mitchell said drive-thrus in the commercial development will impact the traffic but the intersection at Giroux Road and Versailles Avenue will be able to handle the increase.
Coun. Cathy Heron and Coun. Len Bracko both expressed concerns over the loss of commercial space. Lay said while office space is decreasing, the retail space available is actually increasing.
Mayor Nolan Crouse took issue with the letter v being used to name the streets instead of the letter l, but heard from staff that it was too late to change the names without a court order.
“It was the wrong choice,” Crouse said of the names chosen.
Crouse asked about noise control measures and Lay said they’d follow whatever standards in place. Coun. Malcolm Parker asked what would happen if the standards are changed and heard that once a development agreement is in place it’s considered a contract, so Genstar would be able to follow current standards instead of future ones.
Council passed all three readings of the land use bylaw amendment unanimously. Crouse was the lone vote against passing the area structure plan amendment on all three readings, with the rest of council voting in favour.