taluswood bed untis 

By Loreth Beswetherick A 26-unit development at Taluswood has been granted a development permit but some councillors were not comfortable with the small number of bed units allocated the project. Councillor Ken Melamed felt the units are not reflective of actual use and are skewing the overall cap on development. Phase five of Intrawest’s Taluswood subdivision development includes 12 duplex buildings plus two detached dwellings with a total bed unit count of 104. This means each of the three- to four-bedroom units has been allocated four bed-units. Typically each unit in a duplex in Whistler is allocated six while a single hotel room is allocated between two and four, depending on size. Intrawest has also asked for an increase of 1,024 square metres (11,023 square feet) to the gross floor area. Senior planner Sharon Jensen conceded the way Taluswood bed unit calculations had been done was a "bit different." She said the units were allocated four bed units regardless of size. This did not sit well with Melamed. He said four bed units are being counted when the number of people staying in the TA-zoned properties will more likely be six to eight. "That has been our experience. We are not sticking to our guns." Melamed said there is an expectation that council control the bed unit cap. He said allowing Intrawest the extra square footage just makes it easier to squeeze even more people in. In terms of a covenant on the property, phase five was restricted to a maximum of 140 bed units. Melamed said he was concerned the outstanding bed units will now be left floating or there may be an expectation they could be shifted to another development. "I don’t see why these (duplex) units shouldn’t reflect the number of people staying in them... we are going to get jammed up in the last phase," said Melamed. The Taluswood subdivision was allocated a total of 1,002 bed units and is being built in six phases. Those units are being drawn down from the bed unit pool Intrawest acquired with the Whistler Mountain merger. Jensen said after phase five there will be 400 bed units remaining for phase six of the Taluswood project. She said phase six units would have to be rather small to eat up all the remaining units. She added the zoning will dictate the size of the phase six development. Jensen said council had the option to change the covenant for phase five to allocate more bed units per unit. Melamed said he was looking for assurance that if the bed units were not consumed at Taluswood they would disappear. Either that or he would like to see the covenant changed to be more reflective of the use. Jensen said the units won’t disappear because they were never fixed to the land in the first place; they were being drawn down from Intrawest’s inventory. Municipal administrator Jim Godfrey said, however, if the 1,002 bed units are not all used by the end of phase six they will in fact be gone. He said the zoning limits the type of development. Godfrey said this was different from the bind council found themselves in with the Crown when Nordic Estates was developed. In that case the municipality was left having to compensate the Crown for bed units not used up in the development. He noted the municipality had been trapped in a reverse situation with the Park Georgia development which was allocated a set number of bed units but the developers looked to the zoning which allowed for more. Melamed was also concerned a date had not been set for the construction of a summer-use gravel trail from Taluswood down to Creekside but assurance was given the trail would be built this summer.

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