Seniors home gets the OK

An expansion to the Evergreen Seniors Home was given the green light by city council despite some concerns from Nicholls Road residents

An expansion to the Evergreen Seniors Home was given the green light by city council despite some concerns from Nicholls Road residents worried the facility will increase traffic on their quiet, neighbourhood street.

Owners Calvin and Cindy Headrick had their major development permit application approved by council last week to expand their existing 38-unit complex on the corner of Evergreen and Dogwood. The Headricks are proposing to add an additional 27 units in a separate, two-storey building on Nicholls Road.

Kevin Brook, senior planner for the city, recommended council move forward with the project.

“Campbell River has an aging population,” he said in a report to council. “Senior housing is needed in all communities on northern Vancouver Island. The demand for this form of housing will continue to increase as the city’s population ages.”

But some residents on Nicholls Road have expressed concerns surrounding privacy and an increase of traffic with the new development.

Kelly and Blake McCay, who own the home next to the proposed site, are worried their family will be on display for all to see.

“We were extremely disappointed to find out that the plans included a second storey which would run the length of our property with windows facing out over our front and back yard,” Kelly McCay said in a letter to council. “With the advice of a professional landscaper we would request that tall trees, that don’t lose their leaves, be installed along the property line to create privacy from visitors and patients.”

Brooks said the Headricks have agreed to increase the landscaping along the property line to protect the McCay’s privacy.

“The applicant has proposed landscaping on the three sides of the property, east to buffer the parking from the single-family dwellings at 70 Dogwood, to the south to create an attractive street presence along Nicholls Road, and to the west to buffer the proposed addition from the single-family dwelling and add additional screening to preserve the privacy of the adjacent property,” said Brooks, who noted the McCays have accepted the landscaping plan.

Other concerns were raised by neighbour Pat Barber, who lives across the street from the property. Barber was worried about possible parking issues on the street and an increase in traffic.

Brooks said the Headricks intend to build a designated parking area to keep cars off the street.

“The proposed development plan has addressed the concerns by proposing that all parking will be covered and the primary entrance of the building will remain at 635 Evergreen Road (the existing facility),” Brooks said.