An artist’s rendering showing conceptual massing related to a re-zoning application for proposed development on Nelson Road and Linley Valley Drive. (DHK Architects image)

An artist’s rendering showing conceptual massing related to a re-zoning application for proposed development on Nelson Road and Linley Valley Drive. (DHK Architects image)

City of Nanaimo considering re-zoning application for more than 150 homes in north end

City council passes two readings of Nelson Road re-zoning application

A re-zoning application for 168 homes next to Randerson Ridge Elementary School is proceeding to the public hearing stage.

Nanaimo city council, at a meeting Monday, Dec. 20, passed first and second readings of a re-zoning application for adjacent properties at 6033 and 6053 Nelson Rd.

The applicant, Insight Holdings Ltd., has developed concepts for townhouses facing Nelson Road and a six-storey multi-family residential complex facing Linley Valley Drive.

“The actual site design [and] building configurations will change,” said Nigel Gray, planner and project manager with MacDonald Gray Consultants. “This is just the re-zoning stage, so we are just talking about land use and proving that we can get it on the property right now.”

He noted that the slope of the land would allow for the multi-family buildings to be “nestled” so that the bottom two storeys would be situated next to underground parking.

“The grade break is pretty dramatic in that it allows you to tuck a six-storey building at the bottom of the hill, which would essentially be lower than the proposed townhomes up towards Nelson,” said Gray.

The applicant proposes two driveways on Nelson Road – one of them shared with a neighbouring property – and one driveway on Linley Valley Drive. At an online public information meeting this past fall, community members raised concerns about the Nelson Road access points and potential increase to traffic, a city staff report noted.

Coun. Sheryl Armstrong wondered if the traffic study included with the application factored in other north-end development in the works.

“I’m just raising questions that were sent to me about the traffic impact, especially on Nelson Road, which is already impossible in the morning,” she said.

Jeremy Holm, the city’s director of development approvals, said improvements to Nelson Road and its active transportation amenities are in the plans.

“The traffic impact assessment submitted with this application identified that the road network in place supports the traffic that would be anticipated to be generated by the development,” Holm said.

Armstrong also wondered about the project’s potential impact on elementary school enrolment in the area and Holm said Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools is aware of the proposal and is in communication with the city through the Reimagine Nanaimo master planning process that’s underway.

The re-zoning application indicates that the project would include a public pedestrian path linking Nelson Road and Linley Valley Drive, and the applicant intends for 0.4 hectares of the property to become park. A community amenity contribution of $160,000 would go to north-end parks, active transportation infrastructure and the city’s housing legacy reserve.

Council unanimously passed first and second readings of the re-zoning application and it will now advance to a public hearing Jan. 24.

READ ALSO: Nanaimo’s huge Green Thumb plan gets go-ahead to move to public hearing stage



editor@nanaimobulletin.com

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The applicant is asking for a site-specific building height allowance of 22.5 metres for a six-storey multi-family complex proposed for the portion of the property closest to Linley Valley Drive. (DHK Architects image)

The applicant is asking for a site-specific building height allowance of 22.5 metres for a six-storey multi-family complex proposed for the portion of the property closest to Linley Valley Drive. (DHK Architects image)

An artist’s rendering showing conceptual massing related to a re-zoning application for proposed development on Nelson Road. (DHK Architects image)

An artist’s rendering showing conceptual massing related to a re-zoning application for proposed development on Nelson Road. (DHK Architects image)