Many area residents have expressed valid concerns regarding a proposal to construct four multi-level apartment buildings at 695 Aspen Rd., Comox. Community members that I’ve spoken with recognize that the vacant lot at that location will not remain undeveloped, and in fact support reasonable development of this land. However, it’s clear from perusing available plans that if approved, the development will offer a major, and in the view of many, a detrimental contrast to the existing community. Additionally, if developed as proposed, a significant increase in population density for the area can be anticipated.
The original proposal for this lot was 65 units, the current proposal is for over 230 units. Over the past several years the Town has taken a number of densification initiatives, including approving the establishment of coach houses and secondary suites. Is there now a requirement to overcrowd our neighbourhood of mostly single-family homes with this mega-development?
If built as proposed this complex, with its many additional residents, can be expected to significantly add to noise and traffic levels in the area.
In addition, further strain on other fully committed providers such as emergency services, snow removal and infrastructure maintenance can be anticipated. Additional residents will also require more water, which will be a major challenge for the Town, particularly in summer.
Residents I’ve spoken with are not opposed to development of this property, but it’s felt that our legitimate concerns require consideration, and creation of a plan that more seamlessly integrates with the existing community.
There’s no doubt that development is necessary for our community, whether residential or commercial, but to be successful it must be a co-operative venture with meaningful consideration given to those most impacted.
Ian W. MacDonald,