Significant changes could finally be on their way next spring for the Creekside area.
A development permit application for the Husky gas station was passed by a narrow 4-3 margin Monday, with Mayor Hugh OReilly casting the deciding vote in favour of the redevelopment proposal.
And a contract for the redevelopment of Lake Placid Road was approved eight years after redevelopment of the street was first promised by the municipality.
Redevelopment of the Husky was the more contentious issue among council members Monday. Each member who voted against the proposal had a different reason for objecting.
Counc. Ted Milner didnt like the idea that propane will no longer be available at the Husky, and said reducing service at the south end of town is not an improvement.
Nick Davies called the no-touch car wash that is part of the redevelopment "dubious" and predicted it would fail, leaving an eye-sore.
Ken Melamed opposed the redevelopment because of the relaxed set-back from the highway that the plan calls for.
Husky Oil will demolish its existing facility some time next year and rebuild a 3,440 square foot retail/convenience store operation on the site. The automobile repair facilities will be eliminated, three gas pump islands will be built, and the touchless car wash will be on the north side of the site.
Husky will remove the single-wall gasoline holding tanks on site and install a triple-wall holding tanks, which will be monitored electronically for leakage. Enclosed pans will also be installed under the gas pumps.
"This will be a first-class installation," consultant Jim Allan told council. "I dont say absolutely nothing can go wrong, but this installation takes all the available precautions."
Allan said the site has been tested for contamination and it meets the provinces standards for commercial sites.
He added construction will likely take three-four months, which means Whistler will have only one gas station for at least part of that time.
Meanwhile, the long-awaited, often promised redevelopment of Lake Placid Road should get underway in the spring. Work will include putting the electrical and telephone wires underground, curb and gutter on the north side of the road, a sidewalk from the train station to the highway on the north side of Lake Placid Road, ornamental sidewalk lighting, new pavement, a storm water collection and treatment system, new water piping and new sewer piping.
The municipality has allocated $1 million for the project, while B.C. Hydro and Telus are contributing approximately $300,000 toward the cost of putting the wires underground.
Intrawest will be responsible for the cost of the sewer line and part of the road repairs, as required through the Taluswood project.
Applications for infrastructure funds from senior levels of government, which would have matched municipal funds, were never successful. As a result, the project was scaled back from what was envisioned eight years ago, when curb and gutters were planned for both sides of the street.
Coastal Mountain Excavation, which submitted the low bid of $886,500, was awarded the contract for redevelopment of Lake Placid Road.