September 23 Committee of the Whole Highlights


  • More Bicycle Parking in the Village?

I voted to support further consultation with OB’s Business Improvement Association on a Parks and Recreation Commission’s meeting minutes’ item, suggesting expanded bike parking in the Oak Bay Ave. Village core.  Vehicle parking in and around the village has been previously identified as challenging by the business community so consultation with the BIA was recommended as an important part of the process.  The Mayor and other Council members also discussed the potential to use a part of the front lawn at Municipal Hall for bike parking, a suggestion that requires staff’s assessment as to cost and feasibility.  This item will be coming back to Council for further deliberation at a future meeting.

  • Applications Deferred

Building permit applications for three separate Uplands’ properties were deferred by Council following input from me and Councilors Copley and Herbert, all of us members of the Uplands Land Use Committee (Councilor Copley is Chair).  We attended site visits to these properties earlier in the day (routine when such referrals are made to the Committee), accompanied by Director of Building and Planning Roy Thomassen.  Each property presented concerns sufficient to support a deferral of the applications pending further information from the applicants.

Two applications to build two houses on two small lots on Margate were denied because of the massing issue until the work of the Floor Area Ratio (FAR) Committee is completed.  Council suggested to the developer that, until the FAR issue is adequately addressed and the Committee’s recommendations are received, applications of this kind should not be considered.  In principle, some Council members believe (and I agree) that the concept of two smaller, two-storey homes (about 1,700 sq. ft. each) has merit because there is a growing market for residents wanting to downsize or make a lifestyle change, or people wanting to move here, are looking for smaller homes with less garden.  In another location, on bigger lots, this application would not be as challenging.

Other applications were approved by Council for referral to the next Council meeting, supported by staff reports and recommendations.

Next Council Meeting:

September 30, at 7:30, Council Chambers (there will also be two public hearings).  Please check the Municipal website for details.