Open house for illegal space zoning changes 

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Want to have a say on illegal space or find out more — then make sure to attend an open house on the issue Friday March 2.

It is being hosted by the Illegal Space Task Force, the Whistler council-appointed body created to manage proliferating illegal residential floor areas, which is looking for feedback on proposed zoning changes.

Concerned about extra rooms being added to properties, Whistler Mayor Nancy Wilhelm-Morden appointed the task force at a December council meeting.

As well as calling it a safety issue, Wilhelm-Morden said it affected taxation levels, liability rules and insurance.

She appointed Councillor Duane Jackson, who developed the Stonebridge subdivision, to the task force, along with four representatives of the Canadian Home Builders Association (CHBA).

The proposed zoning changes would affect most single-family and duplex properties throughout the municipality:

Crawl and void space definitions would be modified to prevent illegal alterations for use after occupancy permits are issued. There would be a new definition for basement-like floor areas that would be excluded from the gross floor area. A property owner would have the chance to use this space as permitted by the property's zoning. This would be subject to permit, BC Building Code and other land use regulations.

The open house will take place on Friday (March 2) from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Millennium Place. Those attending can review the proposals and provide input. Online comments can also be submitted before March 6, 2012 at whistler.ca/illegalspaces.

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