LETTER: Development proposal is in wrong location

This is not the right location for 350 units of mixed use accommodation, or responsible use of existing agricultural and bio-diverse land.

Dear Editor:

We live on the corner of Latimer and Solly. The Banks Crescent development is known under different names.

The developer is promoting it as Icasa. The town refers to it as Rezoning of 13610 Banks Crescent. The Official Community Plan identifies it as Shaugnessy Springs.

No wonder there’s been difficulty following this proposal.

Although there is a need for Summerland to expand its tax base, and perhaps provide more seniors housing, this is not the right location for 350 units of mixed use accommodation, or responsible use of existing agricultural and bio-diverse land.

In the council document for OCP Amendment and rezoning of 13610 Bank Cres., there are a number of red flags as to why this development should be stopped and an alternative site found.

Council should be following their own community plan.

There is conflicting information as to the zoning of this property. In one instance it states applying for land use designation of High Density Residential (Apartments and Townhouses) and in another creating a new CD8 Comprehensive Development zone (Apartments, Group Home Major) both having different development regulations.

The report admits that the proposed development does not appear to be directly compatible with the OCP requirements of land use designations, including not being connected to downtown and having no public transportation.

No amount of widening the roads or developing sidewalks along Solly and Latimer is going to change the hilliness of the area and the difficulty for seniors to be physically and community engaged.

The proposal ignores the guidelines in the OCP.

The regional growth strategy aims to protect the integrity of agricultural lands and the character of rural areas and preserving and enhancing agricultural character.

Lowertown is a distinct neighbourhood with specific design regulations.

Interior Health’s report as included in the OCP amendment and Rezoning of 13610 Banks Crescent states that due to the area’s topography the site has limited opportunities for seniors to engage in physical activity and connect with other residents (narrow, hilly roads) and a less than desirable location being away from the town’s main amenities.

Increase in water usage will either mean the need of an increase in the capacity of the existing treatment plant or to find an alternative water source.

The population focus for seniors is wrong in this location, and the development too dense. Changing Solly Road from a No Truck Route will alter the residential feel of the neighbourhood, put additional pressure on the utilities and negatively affect property values.

According to this document Lark Construction has recently entered into an agreement with the Crawfords at the end of Latimer to sell their property.

The 230 market housing plus truck delivery and staff traffic for an additional 100 independent and 50 assisted living units will put undue pressure on Solly Road, which is currently a local road for residents and not a collector road like Peach Orchard Road.

Our neighbourhood must stop the sliding forward motion of this project and be an integral part of any development, rezoning and change to the Summerland OCP Plan.

Diana Smith