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Application for 20 apartment buildings in Newton before Surrey council tonight

Project featuring 3,243 dwelling units subject of a public hearing Monday night, followed by a vote on third reading
Development application to build 20 low-rise apartment buildings at 7790 and 7850 King George Boulevard goes to public hearing then a vote on Monday, Dec. 4. (Image: Dawson & Sawyer/Barnett dembek Architects Inc./

A development application to build 20 low-rise apartment buildings in Newton at 7790 and 7850 King George Boulevard is up for a third-reading vote by Surrey city council Monday night after a public hearing.

Crispen Development Ltd. and BCG Village Ltd. is asking for an amendment to the Official Community Plan in order to rezone six blocks of land from Manufactured Home Residential Zone to Comprehensive Development Zone in order for Dawson and Sawyer Properties Ltd. to develop the apartment buildings, with some to include commercial space on the ground floor.

The project features 3,243 dwelling units all told, with 449 units ready for occupancy in 2029, 405 units in 2031, 503 units in 2032, 502 units in 2033, 485 units in 2034, 446 units in 2036 and 453 units in 2037. Proposed are low-rise apartment buildings, three to six storeys high.

The 14.7-hectare (36.3 acres) site consists of two properties currently operated as Bear Creek Glen and Crispen Bays mobile home parks with 292 mobile homes between both sites. They’re fee simple lots, with the home owners paying a monthly pad rental fee to the owner of the property.

A City of Surrey report indicates that in keeping with city policy the applicant is “responsible for relocating the existing residents in an appropriate manner acceptable to the residents and council as well as complying with provincial regulations outlined within the Manufactured Home Park Tenancy Act.”

READ ALSO COSTLY LIVING: Housing headaches for residents forced out of Surrey manufactured home parks

Prior to the public hearing, council has received eight pieces of correspondence in support, one opposed and two expressing concerns. One correspondent, G. Leering, a senior citizen living in an “affordable manufactured home” there, wrote to council that “close to 300 families, disabled individuals and seniors are being affected by this development project.

“The housing problem is seriously misunderstood by all levels of government. Building more homes and rental units, increasing density will not solve the housing problem. High density projects add more stress on limited resources such as our hospital, schools, law enforcement and road systems,” Leering writes. “All levels of government talks about building more affordable housing, well we live in an ‘Affordable Housing Community’ which soon will no longer exist and we will become part of the unaffordability problem. The government does nothing to protect the existing affordable housing market.”

Leering lamented “The destruction of perfectly good homes for the sake of profit.”

According to the school district, approximately 427 school-age children are expected to reside at this development and the applicant projects, according to a City of Surrey document, that “the proposed development may actually reduce the number of students in this catchment by approximately 50-60 students over for the next six years as the existing 292 home owners move off the property” and further, the applicant anticipates it will take about nine years for the project to be in a “net positive student enrolment position.”

About the Author: Tom Zytaruk

I write unvarnished opinion columns and unbiased news reports for the Surrey Now-Leader.
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