The City of White Rock issued a stop-work order last week at the site of the city’s next highrise following unauthorized demolition.
City manager Dan Bottrill confirmed Thursday that the order to Vancouver-based Cressey was issued the day before.
“They were demolishing without a permit,” Bottrill said.
He noted the violation continued Thursday morning, despite the order – action he described as “a little troubling.” (A Peace Arch News message left at Cressey’s Vancouver office was not returned by press deadline Monday.)
Last fall, city council voted 4-3 to approve zoning and Official Community Plan amendments that cleared the way for the 12-storey project at 1467-1519 Vidal St. The plan includes 97 apartments, 12 townhouses, underground parking and public green space.
Bottrill said the permit-application process was underway when the violation occurred.
“I thought we were really close,” he said. “I don’t really understand why that kind of action was being taken.”
Bottrill said the demolition was in connection with plans to build a “stick-frame” sales centre for the project. Council approved the associated temporary commercial-use permit in July. It was necessary to enable construction of the sales centre on the property prior to issuance of the building permit for the 12-storey project.
According to city documents, two of 14 townhouses in the Mariner’s Reach complex would need to be demolished to make room for the 3,200-sq.-ft., single-storey building.
According to residents, four townhouses were demolished Wednesday, raising concerns around asbestos abatement; concerns that they later said were eased by discussions with WorkSafe BC officials.
Bottrill said the stop-work order will remain until issues are resolved.