An intersection in Oak Bay deemed dangerous by the community during recent in-depth discussion on an adjacent development will get some attention this year, if not actual dollars.
The much-discussed Cadboro Bay Road and Bowker Avenue intersection took centre stage early in a proposal to build at the same corner, as residents felt the building would otherwise affect safety, traffic, and parking in the area.
Now, the building’s developer, Abstract Development, says it will put $100,000 towards upgrading the intersection and laying the community’s concerns to rest.
“We’ve committed to the funds, but that’s up to them now,” said president Mike Miller, adding this is in the district’s hands at this point. “I’d like to see it run tandem with the construction, then the benefit of the work is realized in tandem.”
In a 2009 report, some improvements were made to the intersection, but those were done in “2009 dollars” said Dan Horan, director of engineering services at District of Oak Bay, adding staff will now need to better estimate what needs are and update the cost estimates accordingly.
The debate over the intersection – and the development itself – has been largely mixed in the Oak Bay community, divided between potential benefits and potential risks to the area.
During an intense public hearing this past May, Coun. Kevin Murdoch noted the Advisory Planning Commission did raise concerns over massing, height, transition with adjacent buildings, impact on reduction of parking and lack of affordable housing. He also highlighted the importance of having a combined plan that works with everyone.
“I’m not sure we’ve resolved their concerns,” Murdoch said. “I still believe quite strongly that we’re going to have to get down to the brass tacks of it and make a community plan.”