A drawing of the proposed facade on Dunsmuir Avenue. Image, Village of Cumberland report

Cumberland rejects parking variance for proposed building

Council agrees to other variance for height change in mixed-use building

Cumberland’s council has, in part, approved variances for a proposed 14-unit mixed-use building on Dunsmuir Avenue.

The developer of the proposal for the empty lot downtown had asked the Village for both heritage alteration and development variance permits. The property is located at 2700 Dunsmuir Ave., between the liquor store and the Waverley Hotel.

The site is in the historic core of the Village, so it requires a heritage alteration permit to make sure new development fits with the downtown heritage character.

The development variance permit request covers a reduction of the ceiling height on the ground floor of the building from 4.2m to 3.7m, as well as a reduction of parking spaces. According to the zoning bylaw, the owner, Citta Holdings Ltd., would be required to have 16 parking spaces but is providing nine and will have to come up with cash-in-lieu for the remaining seven spots that cannot be provided on site. The variance application specifically asked to reduce the cash-in-lieu amount for seven spaces down to four spaces.

Staff did not support the variance to reduce the parking commitment, senior planner Karin Albert told council at a meeting in late November. In the end, council followed staff recommendations for the variances, including turning down the part of the request to reduce the cash-in-lieu for reduced parking spaces.

Coun. Sean Sullivan had questions on details such as whether laundry would be provided at the building, the sign and a possible mural on the building, and space in current lane-ways near the site. He cited a recent example of a large fence that had been torn down near the location.

“There’s definitely some issues that have to be taken care of back there with the size of the trucks,” he said. “This is definitely going to exacerbate that.”

RELATED: Cumberland multi-use development given the go-ahead despite parking concerns

Coun. Jesse Ketler said she liked the look of the building, the amount of bike parking planned and storage space. She also brought up the idea of the appearance of exterior walls and touched on the parking issue, saying she did not support the variance for parking.

“This currently is a parking lot,” she said. “It [the proposed building] will definitely increase parking issues in the area.”

Council also raised questions about electric vehicle parking and the accessibility and affordability of the micro-units slated for the top floor of the building.

The plan for the building is to have commercial on the main floor, with two units of retail, business or personal services space. The top three floors will have 14 residential units, including six one-bedroom units, four two-bedroom units and four micro-units on the top level.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Black Lives Matter events planned for Courtenay

Peaceful gatherings are scheduled for Simms Park Friday and Saturday

Arnott taking medical leave as Comox mayor

Coun. Ken Grant will step in a mayor for time being

Comox Valley Regional District receives $100,000 to develop poverty action plan

Courtenay-Comox NDP MLA Ronna-Rae Leonard says a $100,000 grant in provincial funding… Continue reading

North Island support group expands boundaries

Despite restrictions imposed by the coronavirus, the North Island Mood Disorders Society… Continue reading

March dental conference key to many of B.C.’s COVID-19 cases

Early infections from China, Iran were quickly contained

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Cortes Island affordable housing project hangs by a thread

Regional decision makers resort to COVID-19 concerns despite virtual meeting option and push hearing to September

MAP: Dr. Henry reveals which B.C. regions have seen most COVID-19 cases

B.C. health officials release a first look at how the novel coronavirus has reached all corners of the province

North Island recreation camping site closed due to vandalism

Damage happens every year, forcing site manager to reallocate improvement budget to repairs

Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation woman, 26, fatally shot by police in Edmundston, N.B.

Police were conducting a well-being check at the time of the incident

Seniors to receive up to $500 in promised COVID-19 emergency aid in early July

The Liberal government first promised the extra help in mid-May, but had to create a new system to deliver the aid

VIDEO: Revelstoke bear wanders into Animal House pet store

Staff got ready to chase it out with a broom

Man found dead in his tent at Island homeless camp

Facebook posts tell of personal struggles and attempts to stay clean and sober

Most Read