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Caveats placed on fringe development

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By Alison Taylor

As it drops its opposition of the large subdivision outside its northern boundary, council remains concerned about the long-term impacts of the development for Whistler taxpayers.

Chief among the concerns expressed Monday night was the future of the private sewage plant at the 108-home Green River development and the potential for the municipality to pay the price if that plant fails.

The development is currently just outside the municipal boundary but is part of the area considered by the province for Whistler’s boundary expansion.

Councillor Eckhard Zeidler asked for assurances that Whistler taxpayers not pay the burden of a future hook up to the municipal sewage plant.

Mayor Ken Melamed said he didn’t think there would be support for the project if it has the potential to expose Whistler taxpayers down the road.

“Nobody’s going to let the developer off the hook,” he said.

Among the other conditions that came with their support council asked that the landowners send a letter to the province withdrawing their objections to the municipal boundary expansion.

Other conditions focus on public access to the land, such as creating a boat launch and seven parking spaces and the Sea to Sky Trail through the area.

Council has also asked that the average unit size be 5,000 square feet, with the largest house no bigger than 7,500 square feet.

The rezoning is now before the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District board. Part of the deal will see the developer give almost $2.5 million for the recreational facilities reserve fund in Electoral Area C, next to Pemberton.

If Whistler swallows the development in its boundary expansion there would be increased expenditures for almost all municipal services, such as policing and fire services. At the same time, property owners in the new subdivision will pay property tax to the resort municipality.

 

Policy removed from agenda

A council policy change, which would have increased development rights for Intrawest, was pulled from the agenda at the last minute Monday.

The report details a miscalculation in the number of bed units allocated to Intrawest over time. Instead of 64 units, or the equivalent of 10 single-family homes, staff now calculate the number of bed units at 146, or enough to build 24 single-family homes or 36 town homes.

The change could pave the way for an Intrawest proposal currently in the hall which would see Base II rezoned for 22 high-end town homes on the corner of Lot 6.

When asked why the report was removed from the agenda, Mayor Ken Melamed said council needed more time to discuss the policy change.

Those discussions will take place in a closed-door, meeting under terms of the Community Charter.

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