Hotel, conference centre planned for Douglas
A nine-building complex that includes a four-storey hotel and conference centre is in the works on a parcel of land near the Pacific Highway U.S. border crossing.
A project of Silverstone Ventures Inc., a development of its kind is needed in the area, developer Hardy Bains said Monday.
“I think there’s a demand for it, a good-quality hotel… the conference centre,” Bains said. “It will provide jobs and everything.”
But some residents say the Douglas area is no place for the multi-million dollar project.
Slated for 1.23-hectares at 388 175A St., a lack of access from 176 Street means those wanting to get to any part of the complex will have to use 175A Street, a narrow residential road, Dennis Befus said last week.
“I don’t know what the city is thinking about, really,” said Befus, who chairs the Douglas Point townhouse strata. “We just can’t see that (kind of development) down there.”
Construction of a small strip mall on the parcel’s northwest corner is already underway. A general development permit for the site was approved by Surrey council in 2010, and Bains is hopeful remaining specific development permits for the Pacific Crossing Centre will get the nod next month. He wants to open the facility in 2013.
The land has been zoned for such a project “for many, many years,” noted Bains, who also owns the 10-year-old Best Western Peace Arch Inn, at 2293 King George Blvd.
“You can put a shopping centre, you can put a hotel…” he said.
Bains confirmed he and architect Maciej Dembek met with residents of Douglas Point Thursday to discuss the project, which also includes a water park and retail space.
Traffic was the biggest concern, he said.
Bains, who lives in Surrey, said residents moving to the area should have expected growth given the proximity to the border.
At the same time, he, too, has concerns with access to his development.
Of four planned entry points, none are from 176 Street, he said.
“I’m trying hard to get one,” said Bains, adding the lineup of trucks heading stateside “won’t help me either.”
Bains said he plans to meet with officials to see if a resolution can be found.
“I want people to have easy access to my centre, too. If they can’t get in and out, they will have a hard time, I will have a hard time.”
Befus, Dembek and City of Surrey officials could not be reached by Peace Arch News’s deadline Monday afternoon.