Developer Rod Nadeau simply doesn't have the time, the will or the money to fight the municipality in the courts.
That's why he's handing over Lot 10 (The Woods) at Rainbow to the local government in exchange for dropping the lawsuit against him.
Nadeau's lawyers drafted that intent in a letter to municipal solicitors on May 18, less than three weeks after a lawsuit was filed against him in the Supreme Court of British Columbia.
"I'm tired of fighting with them," he said this week. "I'm not young enough and they don't play by the rules."
At issue is a closed-door decision by council to reject Nadeau's pricing for a resident-restricted seniors' housing complex on Lot 10, at the centre of the new Rainbow subdivision.
He said he spent a year-and-a-half and hundreds of thousands of dollars on the project. That included designing the building, consulting with the Mature Action Committee (the seniors' group in Whistler) and working with municipal staff.
In the end, the average price for a restricted unit at the Woods was $370 per square foot.
Council balked at that price, using as part of its rationale the Whistler Housing Authority building at Cheakamus Crossing that came in at $260 per square foot.
"We go to all the trouble of designing the building, spending hundreds of thousands of dollars, going through a year-and-a-half process with the municipal staff, with MAC," said Nadeau. "If they didn't want us to build that quality and type of building they should have told us a year-and-a-half ago."
His frustration is evident.
He withheld turning over Lot 10 in the hopes that down the road he could convince future council members to change their minds.
"I was actually withholding it to try to negotiate with somebody in the future who was going to be a little bit more reasonable," he said.
In the end he decided that he didn't have the time or the money to play out the battle in the courts.
"Lawsuits are not cheap," he said. "They last forever."
Despite this disruption, work is moving ahead on the neighbouring Lot 11. With the design complete Nadeau said they have sold about one-third of the 20-unit project. Once another third has been sold, building of the market units will begin.
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