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Tuesday, August 2nd, 2016

 The Quesnel Lions Housing Society (QLHS) is buying a neighbouring property immediately north of the project site on Reid St. Financing will be provided by Integris Credit Union. Purchase of the property will add 50 percent more land to the proposed development and allows an increase in parking, more greenspace and a reduction of density. 

The city’s public hearing on the project was postponed on the request of QLHS, as the property deal was pending at that time. The QLHS has asked the city to re-schedule the public hearing to early October. A public open house will be held by QLHS in September. 

“The first thing I’d like to acknowledge is the incredible patience and good will of the Baker family, who we’re purchasing the property from,” said Mitch Vik, QLHS President. “The project likely could not happen in its present form without the additional property, and we’ve worked hard to make the deal fair to both parties.” 

“Secondly, I want to thank the other neighbours who made their concerns about the previous plan loud and clear. This adds considerable cost to the project, but in the long run, this is the right move. The new plan adds more parking and considerably more green space.” 

Proposed parking will be increased from 11 stalls to 17 stalls, plus there is a small reserve of land if even more parking is required. The revised plan is based on one stall for each of up to 10 market units (apartments rented to seniors who do not require affordable housing), and one stall for every 3 affordable units. 

“Our parking plan continues to be strongly evidence-based,” said Vik.  

“The emerging standard for affordable seniors’ housing appears to be 1 stall for every 3 units. For example, the Lions Club in Parksville operates a 33 unit seniors’ housing project that was approved with only 10 parking spaces—and that includes parking for commercial spaces on the main floor. We now propose more than 1 stall for every 2 units.”  

“Southern communities like Parksville and Kelowna have a lot of experience with seniors housing of different types, and we’ve learned a lot by studying how those places handle it.”  

The ‘affordable’ element is critical to appreciate, says Vik. He says that some people are incorrectly comparing the QLHS project to seniors’ housing for more affluent people, where it makes sense to require more parking. 

Vik noted that QLHS will screen residents for vehicle ownership, make it against the tenancy agreement to park on the street nearby, and enter an agreement with the city to ensure that the building will always be used for seniors’ affordable housing. 

For more information on QLHS’s research on parking, see qlionshousing.ca/project/, and click on the link under “Parking.” 

QLHS’s proposed 30 unit, four story building at the corner of Reid and McNaughton would be the first new apartment building in North Quesnel in over 26 years. More information on the project can be found at www.qlionshousing.ca. 

The QLHS was created by the Quesnel Lions Club in 2012 after the Lions, through consultation with the community, determined that more affordable housing for seniors is an important need for Quesnel. 

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Contact: Mitch Vik, President, QLHS  cell 250 983 6784

 

 

 
Quesnel Lions Housing Society
PO Box 4535
Quesnel BC V2J 3J8
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