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Shoestring neighbourhood moves forward

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Another Whistler subdivision is finally getting underway.

The Shoestring Neighbourhood development, at the site of the old Boot Pub and Shoestring Lodge, got the nod Tuesday night to move ahead to a public hearing. It was a milestone moment as the developer has worked on the project with municipal staff for more than two years to get to this stage in the rezoning.

The development includes 41 market townhouses/duplexes and 36 units of employee housing at the entrance to White Gold. The employee housing makes up for the outstanding units owed by Cressey Development for their Westin Hotel & Spa project, dating back several years.

When asked about building to green standards, project manager David Evans told council the developers were committed to using Whistler Green – a set of green building standards developed for the municipality.

Evans said Whistler Green generally applies to single-family home development. They would be looking to modify those standards to fit in with the duplex/townhouse development.

"We’ve looked at this as a pilot project," he said.

There will be community amenities associated with the rezoning.

Cressey will replace the Nancy Greene Drive bridge over the Fitzsimmons Creek with a higher and longer bridge designed to withstand a one in 200 year flood. There will be sidewalks on both sides of the bridge.

The dyke on the east side of the Creek will also be raised.

This is the third neighbourhood development, which includes a significant portion of employee housing, to be given initial approval by this council.

The Rainbow development and the athletes’ village are also making their way through the municipal rezoning process.

Athletes’ village awaits environmental OK

Work has yet to begin on the athletes’ village in the Lower Cheakamus as the Whistler 2020 Development Corporation waits for federal environmental approval.

Project manager Neil Godfrey said he expects that approval, under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, in the coming weeks. He is not concerned this will unduly delay the project.

This process outlines how the development corporation will mitigate the environmental concerns on the site.

Once the approval is in hand, the clearing and grubbing work can begin at the Lower Cheakamus. The environmental approval will also trigger the release of the federal and provincial funds for the $130 million project.

On Tuesday night council kept the project moving through municipal hall by giving third reading to the bylaws.

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