Business

Hudson Mews opening continues Victoria's downtown rental revival

Victoria Mayor Dean Fortin, centre, walks into a one-bedroom show suite with Victoria police Chief Frank Elsner, left, and Chris Colbeck, vice-president of sales and marketing of Townline at the media launch for the Hudson Mews on Wednesday.  - Melanie Orr
Victoria Mayor Dean Fortin, centre, walks into a one-bedroom show suite with Victoria police Chief Frank Elsner, left, and Chris Colbeck, vice-president of sales and marketing of Townline at the media launch for the Hudson Mews on Wednesday.
— image credit: Melanie Orr

The opening this weekend of a purpose-built rental building in Victoria’s Hudson district is part of a bigger rental revival taking place across the city, says Mayor Dean Fortin.

City hall approved $290 million in construction permits in 2013, and Fortin said there are more cranes in Victoria’s skyline today than during the city’s last building boom in 2006.

“This is part of moving forward the idea of having districts throughout downtown,” Fortin said at the Hudson Mews’ unveiling Wednesday.

The 120-unit rental building, located at 780 Fisgard St., will provide 83 one-bedroom and 37 two-bedroom rental apartments, and fill a demand for rental properties in the downtown core, Fortin said.

Last week, Victoria council approved another all-rental development, a 138-unit, three-tower complex at the corner of Cook and Pandora streets.

“This is exactly what we want to see, and when we talk to residents, this is what they want to see,” Fortin said.

The completion of Hudson Mews marks the latest chapter in the ongoing development of the Hudson district, said Rick Ilich, Townline president and owner. Townline is putting forward its next development application to city hall staff next week for an adjacent building.

“The district really is taking on a life of its own, anchored around the Victoria public market,” he said. Ilich thanked the public for their patience after a vandalism incident last November caused construction delays to Hudson Mews.

Coun. Charlayne Thornton-Joe said the city is finally seeing the benefit of focusing on district creation across the downtown core.

“All of these models of anchoring our businesses and residents around districts started with Chinatown,” she said. “It’s exciting to see this latest project moving from concept to reality.”

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