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Public hearing for Alta Lake Road housing project postponed to March 9

Originally set for Feb. 23, RMOW rescheduled hearing due to issues with mail-out notice
N-Alta-Lake-Housing-27.49-BRADEN-DUPUIS
A housing proposal for 5298 Alta Lake Road is presented to the community at an open house in October 2019. File photo by Braden Dupuis

A public hearing this week for a controversial housing project proposed for 5298 Alta Lake Road has been postponed until March, announced the Resort Municipality of Whistler (RWOW).

Originally set for Tuesday, Feb. 23, the municipality has rescheduled the hearing for Tuesday, March 9 at 6:30 p.m. In an email, the RMOW said there were “issues with addresses on the previous mail out” notifying residents of the hearing, which prompted the change.

“[W]e are rescheduling this meeting to ensure all residents are in receipt of a public hearing notice and that everyone has a chance to participate in this public input opportunity,” the announcement went on.

The project—which proposes 11 market tourist-accommodation units, 11 market residential units and 21 employee-restricted units on the lakefront site—has garnered significant opposition from residents near Nita Lake, who have spoken up against the project’s density and impacts on traffic and sight lines. Critics have also questioned whether the proponent, the Michael Hutchison-led Empire Club Development Corp. is contributing enough employee housing for what it is getting in return. 

Council, meanwhile, has generally been supportive of the project since it was first introduced, with some councillors noting that the developer is already entitled to build a hotel and several cabins under the site’s current zoning.

The hearing—likely to be a long one given the opposition from residents—is the final opportunity for public input before council considers third reading and then adoption.

Relevant documents and instructions for joining the online public hearing, held over Zoom, will be available on Feb. 25 at whistler.ca/RZ001157.

The meeting agenda, meanwhile, will be available on March 4 at whistler.ca/publichearings