Proposed townhouse project in Nanaimo would cater to families

At least half of the units in the 219 townhouse development in the northern part of the Harewood neighborhood are said to have three or more bedrooms

A rezoning proposal for a set of 219 townhouses with at least half of the units dedicated to much-needed married quarters is undergoing a public hearing in Nanaimo.

The concept plan presented to city council shows rows of three-story townhouses — a form of housing in high demand in the growing city, Nanaimo’s director of development approvals told councilors.

Jeremy Holm said at least half of the units would have three or more bedrooms, “which I think is a good move to support family housing in this part of town”.

The city council voted in favor of the second reading of the project.

Plans call for part of the development site to be dedicated to a park, as part of the developer’s community contribution. The rezoning requests cover 560 and 604 Fourth St. and 361 Howard Ave.

The proponent proposes that the land be part of a comprehensive development district area. The proposed zone would include site-specific regulations relating to height, density, lot coverage and setbacks.

Howard Avenue Project Ltd. is applying for rezoning in the name of company number 0760408 BC Ltd., with offices in Vancouver, and in Gashtaseb and Mahin Kiamanesh.

The townhouses would be built in the northern part of the Harewood neighborhood, close to schools and services, public transportation routes and close to Vancouver Island University.

Watfield Avenue would be extended through the site.

If council approves the rezoning, an agreement to secure amenities, including three-plus bedroom units and a multi-use pathway, would be required.

The grand opening of the park is valued at $168,000 and $51,000 would go to the city’s housing legacy fund.

Com. Sheryl Armstrong said some fear Watfield Avenue will see an increase in traffic as it becomes a connecting road.

Holm said Howard and Wakesiah Avenues will likely take most of the traffic and there will also be improvements for pedestrians and cyclists.

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