Subdivision plans move ahead in North Saanich

Single family houses proposed for property near Victoria airport

Preliminary plans for a development at 9395 East Saanich Rd. show 39 lots that would likely have single family houses with garages. Developers are aiming for a starting price of $400

Preliminary plans for a development at 9395 East Saanich Rd. show 39 lots that would likely have single family houses with garages. Developers are aiming for a starting price of $400

A subdivision proposed near the airport is being targeted to young families.

“This is the best site in North Saanich to do this where it doesn’t affect the rural ambience of the area,” Coun. Ted Daly said at a meeting last week.

Developer Gary Lunn proposes to build about 39 single family houses at 9395 East Saanich Rd., at the corner with Canora Road. Lunn said he aims for prices starting at $400,000.

“That’s a lot of money to come up with,” Don Caverley told councillors.

“My concern is that $400,000 is not affordable and if the market will draw more,” that’s what the houses will sell for, added Mayor Alice Finall. “All we’re doing is making more housing for retirees somewhere else.”

The layout of the property is yet to be decided, but councillors voted in favour of lots without laneways in the back, meaning parking would likely be on the street in front of the houses and in the driveways. Lunn said he plans to build attached garages on the homes.

“Laneways have some [esthetic] benefit, but bigger back yards have the appeal to families,” Coun. Craig Mearns said.

Preliminary drawings show plans for a small park on the property.

If the plans are to move ahead, public consultations will be required to amend the official community plan, which doesn’t currently allow single family houses on small lots.

Communication with the public on this and other possible developments is essential, said Geoff Orr, president of the North Saanich Residents’ Association.

“I’m concerned that the public at large is not clear what we’re dealing with specifically on this issue,” he said.

Council will also decide on an “amenity package” in the future, with costs and services the developer will offer in exchange for allowing the development.

With the exception of Coun. Elsie McMurphy, council supported the application in principle. It comes back to council in August.