An artist rendering of the proposed Thetis Lake Apartments. The 152-unit apartments would be set at and below market price. Developers are asking View Royal council to waive development cost charges to improve building affordability and a number of residents have shown their support for the project, saying View Royal is very much in need of affordable housing. (Seymour Pacific Developments)

Project would revive ‘virtually extinct’ affordable housing in View Royal

Residents show support for 152-unit affordable housing development at Thetis Lake

A proposal for affordable housing on the site of the former Thetis Lake Campground has garnered letters of support from some View Royal residents.

The development application is for Thetis Lake Apartments 152 multi-family residential units in two six-storey rental buildings – priced below or near-market rental prices. With support from the Capitol Regional District (CRD), land owner Limona Group is asking View Royal to waive development cost charges (DCCs) to lower overall building costs. In order to do so, council will have to approve a new bylaw that permits for the waiving of such charges.

“I believe the municipality should encourage and support this project,” said resident Yvonne Arthur in a letter to council. “The DCC credit that the CRD [and] Limona Group are requesting seems reasonable in return of the number of affordable units that would be in result.”

The proposal details a “contemporary West Coast” design with stepped rooflines and colour blocking “to break up the mass of the buildings.”

An affordable housing proposal in the Thetis Lake area includes 152 multi-family residential units in two six-storey rental buildings. Many View Royal residents wrote letters of support to council. (Seymour Pacific Developments)

The area was once the site of Thetis Lake Campground, where 17 mobile homeowners lived full time before being evicted when the property sold in 2017.

At that time, Thetis Lake residents told Black Press they were fearful of entering the increasingly expensive rental and housing market – one going as far as saying they were evicted from the “last affordable housing in Victoria.”

RELATED: Future uncertain for mobile home residents

And while affordable housing proposals can generate contention in some communities, the town of View Royal received multiple letters of support from residents at its council meeting April 2.

“Affordable subsidized housing is virtually extinct in View Royal,” said Jamie Stange. “This is something the community needs very badly.”

Kaleigh Sercombe said: “Subsidies like these create homes that are attainable for families, helping with the current housing crisis. Please help with this looming housing problem by supporting sound companies to create affordable homes in our beautiful town of View Royal.”

Esquimalt-Metchosin MLA Mitzi Dean also expressed her support in a letter to council.

“I…appreciate the support of the Town of View Royal as I understand these new residences under consideration will not generate increased tax revenues and as Council considers the application to waive DCCs.”

At this time, View Royal council has not made any decisions on the development concept or the implementation of a bylaw to waive DCCs, but will be reviewing both over the coming months.

READ ALSO: What is ‘affordable housing?’



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

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