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RMOW takes legal action over Rainbow seniors housing lot

Statement of Claim says developer failed to sell land

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The municipality has launched a lawsuit against The Woods at Rainbow development, designed as a seniors housing complex in the new neighbourhood.

In the Statement of Claim, dated April 30, the Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) states it has been ready for three months to buy the lot at Rainbow for $10, as outlined in the terms of its option.

But it has been unable to do so.

"We're taking the necessary steps to ensure that the option is met," said municipal administrator Bill Barratt this week.

"They didn't transfer the parcel... They indicated that they had an issue with that."

Developer Rod Nadeau, who has been heavily involved in the Rainbow subdivision, has so far failed to sell the land to the RMOW. He did not return phone calls to the Pique before press time this week and no Statement of Defence has been filed.

The disagreement between the two parties arose late last year when Nadeau submitted his price structure for the seniors units. He proposed to build a two-building project on Lot 10 and Lot 11 that would mix both price restricted and market seniors housing together. The average price for a restricted unit was $370 per square foot.

That, said council in a closed-door meeting, was too expensive.

Instead it voted to exercise its option to buy Lot 10 and take on the project itself.

At the time Nadeau expressed his surprise with council's decision.

"They changed the game at the 11 th hour," he said. "And they allowed us to continue down this road for a year and a half."

At that time he estimated he had spent a couple of hundred thousand dollars on designing and developing the project in conjunction with the Mature Action Committee.

At the time of its decision Councillor Chris Quinlan explained council's rationale for exercising its option to purchase Lot 10.

"We rejected that pricing," he said.

"That product wasn't something that will allow us to achieve our goal of the housing authority, and that is that we want people to be able to transition through their entire time in Whistler inside of WHA (Whistler Housing Authority) inventory."

He pointed to the new WHA apartment building at the athletes' village (Cheakamus Crossing) that came in at roughly $260 per square foot.

 

 

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