A slab of vacant land in central Nanaimo could become the site of a large residential development.
Nanaimo-based Rega Properties Ltd. is proposing to construct two four-storey apartment buildings and nine two-storey townhouse buildings, resulting in 133 units of residential housing, at 200 Hansen Rd., near the intersection of Bowen and East Wellington roads.
An application to re-zone the property from ‘low-density residential’ to ‘residential corridor’ passed unanimously following a public hearing Thursday night at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre.
The new zoning designation accommodates four-storey apartments exceeding a height of nine metres.
“We’re not asking for any additional units to be built on this property, it’s strictly a case that we were looking to have a little better site coverage and that was something that couldn’t be dealt with by variance,” said Guy Wonnacott, owner of Rega Properties.
The development is located on a 2.65-hectare property at the end of Hansen Road. A 60-unit multi-family townhouse development on 1601 Creekside Drive is located just south of the property. The vice-president from that strata spoke at Thursday’s public hearing in favour of the 200 Hansen Rd. proposal, saying it will bring a number of improvements including water handling, and adding that a developed site will be preferable to current views of rocks and weeds.
One of the owners of nearby Nanaimo Sheet Metal, Len Ronkainen, said he’s not opposed to the development, but warned that Hansen Road is used by vehicles outside his business and he is also concerned about noise complaints that may arise due to the “hammering, welding, grinding” that happens daily at his shop.
According to a staff report, vehicle access to the residences would be from East Wellington Road via Hansen Road. There are also plans for a pedestrian pathway connecting to Bowen Road.
A covenant limiting the number of residential units to 133 units will be registered against the Hansen Road property in order to ensure that the development doesn’t exceed the density shown in Rega Properties’ conceptual plan, the report notes.