Height-reduced variation for Nichol Road proposal

Receipt of staff report opposed by White Rock Mayor Wayne Baldwin.

A five-storey development is proposed for North Bluff and Nichol roads.

Following two development applications that received little support from council members and the public, a revised proposal for a lower five-storey development 10 blocks west of White Rock’s town centre has been submitted to the city.

The application – made by Texor Homes Inc. for a 51-unit, mixed-use building at North Bluff and Nichol roads – was presented in an information report to the land use and planning committee Monday.

Mayor Wayne Baldwin was the lone council vote against receiving the staff report, noting after the vote that the project – which would require an Official Community Plan amendment and rezoning – “pre-empts the OCP process,” currently under review.

“My concern is that we are very close to having a (new) OCP, and I don’t want to see the OCP be developer-driven,” Baldwin said.

Coun. Lynne Sinclair responded that the committee was not yet in a position to endorse the project, which will first go to a public information meeting, followed by the advisory design panel.

“I just thought the motion was to receive the report, we’re not making any decision tonight,” Sinclair said. “I’m assuming that decision will come after a public-information meeting.”

Baldwin reiterated his view that the OCP review process should be completed before proceeding.

“The last time we dealt with this project, it had not even come to this stage, but we were deluged with all kinds of emails and it created all kinds of angst in the community, and we hadn’t had the chance to weigh in on it,” Baldwin said.

The initial Texor application, for a 15-storey residential development, was received by the city last May and met with opposition by residents who spoke out against it at a public-information meeting in August.

That application was withdrawn and replaced by a revised, “scaled-back” proposal for an eight-storey development in February. Council members expressed little support for the revised project, describing it as “inappropriate” for the area outside of the town centre.

The five-storey proposal is currently undergoing staff review and will be subject of a public information meeting in the coming weeks, staff said.

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