Nordic Place hostel gets development permit 

Council seeks 'conversation' around employee housing

click to enlarge PHOTO BY BRADEN DUPUIS - PERMIT APPROVED Due to a scheduling conflict at the Maury Young Arts Centre, council met in the Flute Room at municipal hall for its April 30 meeting.
  • Photo by Braden Dupuis
  • PERMIT APPROVED Due to a scheduling conflict at the Maury Young Arts Centre, council met in the Flute Room at municipal hall for its April 30 meeting.

a hostel at Nordic Place in Creekside is set for redevelopment after receiving council's approval on April 30.

Plans for the property include a new 510-square-metre building to replace the existing building.

"In 1970 the existing hostel was built by the (Simon Fraser University) ski club, so it's been there for quite awhile," said planner Robert Brennan in a presentation to council.

The property was sold in 2018, with the new owner choosing to redevelop it with a new hostel, Brennan said.

"It's quite exciting that they want to do this, because it's going to have dormitory sleeping accommodations, a semi-private sleeping area ... and significant upgrades to the facilities on the site," he said.

The new building will include a two-bedroom "caretaker's suite," 22 dorm beds and four semi-private units (each allocated four beds), for a total of 40 private beds.

But Councillor Ralph Forsyth wondered if they might be used for employees, even if only temporarily.

"I would like a resolution," he said. "Here's an opportunity for us to do something, maybe it will work, maybe it fits their plans, maybe they say no, not interested.

"If there's something that we can do to grease the skids, if you will, then I'm all ears for that ... there's 40 beds, let's see if we can snap it up, even if it's for a limited time, and then it reverts back to its original hostel status."

Following its approval of the permit, council passed a separate resolution directing staff to enter into a conversation with the owner about using the facility for employee housing.

Council meetings can be viewed online at whistler.ca.

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