Cheakamus Crossing to get new development 

Neighbours worry about parking and snow dumping

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Council has approved setback and parking variances for a new five-unit project at Cheakamus Crossing, amid concerns from surrounding neighbours.

It's called Cinque, at 1030 Legacy Way.

Described as a three-storey live/work townhouse project it will conform to the master plan for the neighbourhood.

The units will be roughly 2,100 square feet, each with a single car garage and room on site for four additional spots.

On Tuesday night, council approved variances on all four sides of the building. For example, the front setback is now varied from three metres to 1.6 metres. This still keeps the front of the building 4.8 metres from the curb — slightly more than the neighbouring buildings.

The concerns, however, come down to parking and snow removal as outlined in letters to council.

Parking is tight in this area of the legacy neighbourhood, with three buildings sharing four visitor parking spots for 100 units.

Overflow parking has been informally going to the vacant lot, now set for development.

The other issue is the snow removal — snow is also being dumped in the vacant lot. A development in its place could drive up strata costs, as snow must be removed somewhere else.

"We recognize that this is a very tight urban site, as part of the Cheakamus 'main street,'" wrote Crosland Doak, who is part of the design team, in a letter to the neighbours.

He suggested that a building on the vacant lot will "better fulfill" the main street design intent than a snow pile.

And as for parking, these units are designed as live/work units.

"These are a new building type to Whistler and we expect with a specific work space adjacent to the home, the demand for a second vehicle will be even lower."

Current residents, however, are still struggling with the parking constraints at Cheakamus.

Mons rezoning delayed

Council delayed third reading of the Mons amendment bylaw after a community member at Tuesday's public hearing raised concerns.

Among other things, Milo Rusimovic questioned why the municipality was contributing money to the proposed $1.6 million underpass at the Mons industrial site, west of the highway and north of Nesters.

"Why we should pay for it is beyond me," said Rusimovic. "This zoning was an amenity."

He was told that it was always anticipated the municipality would pick up the cost of the Valley Trail north of the bridge, which has since turned into an underpass.

Rusimovic also questioned the safety of the underpass given its location. He questioned whether or not council had been on the site since the recent rain.

"I would suggest respectfully that this is a flood plain area... and a tunnel is a frightening project," he said.

As per policy when concerns are raised at a public hearing, council delayed third reading of the bylaw amendment until its next meeting.

Family Day best left alone: mayor

Whistler's Mayor, Nancy Wilhelm-Morden, is encouraging members of Whistler's community to stand against a circulating petition asking that the Family Day long weekend be moved to the third weekend in February.

"We worked, not just ourselves, but with other resorts in B.C. to keep it on the second (weekend of February)," said Wilhelm-Morden at council Tuesday, Feb. 17.

The third weekend is already occupied by the U.S. long weekend Presidents' Day and also lands on long weekends for Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario, Manitoba, PEI and Nova Scotia.

Putting Family Day on the third weekend could have a negative impact on the experience of tourists as crowded hills and roads are an inevitable by-product of combining the holidays. Whistler also lobbied hard to spread the weekends out as a way to support local businesses.

- with files from Deryk Fallon


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