This map shows the location of a new 25-unit

Landlocked properties prompt unique proposal

City council has approved a major development permit for the construction of a unique multi-residential complex in Willow Point.

The developer is proposing to build five separate two-storey buildings – each with five units per building – for a total of 25 residential units.

Matthew Fitzgerald, planner for the city, said each building will be 467.5 metres squared with a five-plex layout.

“Two of the units will be located entirely on the ground floor while two will have ground floor entries with second floor living spaces,” Fitzgerald said. “One unit will be larger than the other four, with living space on the first and second floors.”

The three units on the bottom floor will have ground floor patios while the two units upstairs will have small balconies.

Four out of the five units are also expected to have one carport each and the fifth unit will have an enclosed attached garage.

The complex is expected to be built next to Upper Island Dental Laboratories Ltd. on landlocked property behind homes on Soderholm Road, Harrogate Road, and Bradford Drive. The site would be accessed via a curved panhandle driveway with a gated entrance off of Soderholm Road.

“The proposal involves two irregularly shaped lots – 2699 Soderholm Rd. which is located in the northern portion of the proposed development and 2701 Soderholm Rd. which is located in the southern section,” Fitzgerald said. “There is an existing single family dwelling located on 2699 Soderholm Road which will be removed as part of this development.”

The buildings are expected to be built around the perimeter of the parcel on the west side of a stream that transects the parcel and physically divides the site. Parking, an internal driveway and a common gazebo area and mailbox are proposed for the centre of the development.

The property to the east of the stream will remain undisturbed in its natural state. Fitzgerald said a six-foot cedar fence will provide privacy for the development and the neighbouring properties with landscaping interspersed around the outer edges of the site.

He said city staff is in full support of the project as it meets the criteria of the city’s Sustainable Official Community Plan and meets the city’s goal of diversified housing.

“The proposed development site is one of the last undeveloped multi-family properties in the immediate area and meets the neighbourhood land use designation policy of permitting clustered densification in established areas in an effort to increase affordable housing stock,” Fitzgerald said. “The proposed development would represent a significant increase in residential density in the Willow Point area. The applicant has worked constructively with staff to achieve a good standard of design in substantial conformity with the OCP (Official Community Plan) guidelines.”