Neighbours who voiced concerns regarding a townhouse project proposed for White Rock’s Foster Street were thanked by the city’s leader last week for their well-thought-out views.
But the opposition heard at a Jan. 14 public hearing didn’t sway council from voting the project forward.
“On the balance of things… I’m going to have to vote in favour of the application,” Mayor Wayne Baldwin said.
Council voted unanimously (with Couns. Helen Fathers and Al Campbell absent) to give third and final reading to a zoning amendment that facilitates the two-building, 14-unit development at 1330, 1338 and 1346 Foster St.
In explaining his decision to support the project, Baldwin said the proposed use conforms with the city’s Official Community Plan; the proposed density is lower than what could have been built on the site; view blockage is lessened by a corridor through the project’s centre; and it will offer more affordable-living units.
Coun. Louise Hutchinson noted proponents could have asked to build an apartment structure on the site.
“It’s not a question of build this or nothing. It’s a question of build this or a three-storey apartment block,” she said.
Coun. Larry Robinson also spoke in favour of the application, noting the same developer has brought projects forward before, and they’re “not always good.”
“I think they’re starting to understand what we’re looking for,” he said.
At least one resident who turned out for the vote could be heard voicing his displeasure, as he left council chambers: “That sucks, eh?” he said
At the Jan. 14 public hearing, opponents cited traffic congestion, view-blocking and that the project breaches the city’s Official Community Plan.
Supporters described the project as needed affordable housing for the city.