An Envirowest Consultants graphic details proposed variances sought at the South Surrey property. (City of Surrey planning report graphic)

An Envirowest Consultants graphic details proposed variances sought at the South Surrey property. (City of Surrey planning report graphic)

South Surrey congregation eyes 8,700-square-metre open-air pavilion

Report notes Science of the Soul would only use the structure two days per year

A massive outdoor pavilion is eyed for property in the 2900-block of 176 Street in South Surrey, for use just two days per year.

According to a City of Surrey planning report, the structure is sought for use by the Science of the Soul congregation, whose 20.8-hectare property is located within the Redwood Heights Neighbourhood Concept Plan, with approximately 5.8 hectares of that within the Agricultural Land Reserve.

Initial development of the property, in 1998-99, included a 6,325-square-metre, 300-seat assembly hall.

The open-air pavilion – proposed to be 8,688 square metres – is sought to support and formalize a two-day summer event, the report states, noting the congregation currently applies for a temporary tent permit every year to accommodate a large festival tent.

Together, the two structures require 1,126 parking spaces, which the applicant proposes to meet by providing 484 paved spaces and 646 grass spaces.

The site is currently short 294 parking stalls for its assembly hall; the construction of an additional 304 paved stalls will bring it up to city requirements. The additional stalls required are due to the proposed open-air structure.

Registration of a restrictive covenant limiting the pavilion’s use to two days per year would be a condition of approval, the report notes.

To enable the grass parking area – proposed for the east side of a watercourse that bisects the site – the applicant is requesting a variance to reduce the minimum stream-side setbacks for a red-coded Class A watercourse to 15 metres from 30.

Staff support the variance, noting that the original development was permitted by the province with a 15-m setback and that no further development is to occur within the 30-m setback.

Staff have recommended council approve a draft development permit for sensitive ecosystems, as well as approve a development variance permit to proceed to public notification.



tholmes@peacearchnews.com
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