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May 6,2014 Land Use

Land Use Committee
Agenda            Minutes
Report: Development Services - Planning, dated April 28, 2014 / File: 6700-20-120

Kevin Jones, Planner, provided an overview of the proposed amendments to the Land Use Contract. He noted that the purpose of the Land Use Contract Amendment application is primarily to allow for a more flexible use of the second storey of the office tower to be built at 220 Brew Street. The floor area of this storey is just below 18,000 sq. ft.

The application proposes:

• increasing the maximum permitted commercial and community gross floor area located on Parcel E from 108,000 sq. ft. to 126,000 sq. ft. (16.7% increase);

• An increase to the overall maximum permitted commercial and community gross floor area located within Suter Brook (Parcels C and E) from 122,000 sq. ft. to 140,000 sq. ft (14.75% increase); and

•An increase to the maximum permitted gross floor area of all types (residential, commercial and community and office) for the entire site from 1,562,000 to 1,580,000 sq. ft , a 1.15 % increase. With this, the maximum permitted floor area ratio would increase from 1.63 to 1.64.

The applicant is seeking this flexibility in order to have a commercial and community use or office use on the second storey of the office building. One of the uses permitted under community and commercial use is a daycare. Currently, ONNI is in negotiations with a daycare to operate within that space. It is envisaged that the daycare may accommodate between 100-140 children.

Brendan Yee, Development Manager, ONNI Group, showed the committee a sample of some public art pieces that will be located in the plaza and noted that he would be happy to answer any questions the committee or the public may have.

Councillor Dilworth opened the floor for public input and the following comments were received.

Kathy Young, Port Moody, expressed opposition to the proposal. Ms. Young noted that she is concerned about the safety of children during drop-off and pick-up to the daycare.

Brian Harney, Port Moody, expressed concern about the daycare. He wondered if there is a Plan B should the daycare be rejected. Mr. Harney noted that the presentation that was put on by the developer was specific to the daycare, and no Plan B was presented. He noted that he worries about access and parking, particularly safety in the area. Mr. Harney reported being told that there would be dedicated parking underground for drop-off and pick-up for the daycare, but he feels that the width of the lane going into and out of the underground parkade is too small for two vehicles to pass through safely.

In response to questions asking for clarification, the Planner reported that the primary parking access would be from Capilano Road. He also said that the proposed amendment would allow for a variety of uses in the space, but the developer is primarily looking at having a daycare in the space.

The representative from ONNI noted that if the amendment is approved, his company intends to finalize negotiations with the daycare provider to open in the second floor space.

Darcy Vogel, Port Moody, reported that she is opposed to the amendment, no matter what the plan entails. She noted that, as an owner in the area, they already have a high degree of tolerance for traffic and parking issues. Ms. Vogel wondered who will monitor the increase in traffic because the City is not responsible for Brew Street; the developer is. She noted that there currently doesn’t seem to be anyone in control because people park all over the place. Ms. Vogel expressed opposition to any kind of increase in traffic, not just the idea of having a daycare in that location.

Sabina Hill, Port Moody, commented that there is a delicate balance needed in creating communities to respond to both retail and residential. Ms. Hill reported that traffic is huge issue and wondered who will police it. She commented that she doesn’t think the village can handle any increased traffic in the mornings and evenings.

Brent Hilpert expressed concern about the developer being allowed to reduce the parking ratio requirements for this area. Mr. Hilpert asked for clarification about a current surplus of 46 parking spaces.

In response to a request for clarification, Kevin Jones noted that there is currently a surplus of parking spaces, but explained that if the new use is approved, the surplus will go down to 32 surplus spaces, meaning there would still be adequate parking in the area. Mr. Jones explained that the Land Use Contract is its own zoning, specific to that area, and the standard zoning requirements are irrelevant.

Sabina Hill commented that, no matter how many parking spaces are provided, people don’t and won’t park in those designated spaces.

Brian Harney noted that there are numerous scrape marks at the entrances to the underground parking because people are always in a hurry.

Councillor Dilworth opened the floor for committee member input and the following comments were received.

Councillor Gerry Nuttall asked about the number of children the daycare would be able to serve and whether the developer has done studies on possible walk-ins to the daycare.

Brendan Yee responded that no less than 100 and no more than 140 children, ranging from infants to toddlers, preschoolers could be served in the daycare. He noted that they had not done any studies on walk-ins, but ONNI has requested that the daycare provider offer daycare spaces to residents of Suter Brook before opening the daycare space to the general public.

Glen MacRae explained that Fraser Health requires 3 sq. metres of indoor space per child and 7 sq. metres of outdoor space, which indicates that approximately 50 children would require about 1/3 of the 18,000 sq. ft. proposed for the second floor of the tower. He asked what other possible uses could be brought in to fill the remaining space.

Kevin Jones responded that entire second floor of the tower would be used for the daycare.

Glen MacRae asked where the children would play outside.

Brendan Yee responded that significant outdoor patio space would be fitted with rubber tiling for safety, so the children would be able to play on the patio space.

Robert Charbonneau asked whether the daycare company is aware of the dynamic of Suter Brook Village.

Brendan Yee responded that this would not be the company’s first daycare of this type, so they are familiar with the dynamic.

Councillor Rosemary Small asked how people would get to the daycare entrance from the parking area.

Brendan Yee responded that parking will be reserved in the area around the elevators for drop-off and pick-up hours.

Councillor Small wondered how they would be able to reserve the parking spaces when the hours for drop-off and pick-up would vary throughout the day.

Brendan Yee noted that parking would be reserved during peak hours.

Councillor Small expressed concern with regard to the smudges that can be seen on the parkade walls, noting that people are always trying to park as close to the entrances as possible, so it would be difficult to monitor the reserved parking.

Councillor Gerry Nuttall asked how many employees were originally projected for this building.

The Manager of Planning responded that the number was approximately 600-800 employees.

Councillor Nuttall noted that this would bring significant vehicle numbers and expressed his concern about noise from the daycare for residents of the other tower.

Councillor Bob Elliott noted that he doesn’t like to drive in that area because of the parking issues. He expressed concern about the parking issues and the number of additional employees driving into the area.

Chris Carter explained that he supports more commercial space, local jobs, and diversification of the tax base, but noted that the big box daycare provider is in contradiction to something council supported last month against big box daycares.

Mayor Mike Clay asked if there is a CD designation on this location.

Kevin Jones responded that there is no CD designation.

Mayor Clay commented that this area is currently zoned for a hotel, which would bring more people in and out of the area. He noted that there is a lot of desire in the city for a daycare, and that no matter what is put in the space, the traffic in the area will increase, so these problems are not unique to a daycare.

Moved, seconded and CARRIED
THAT the application for a Land Use Contract Amendment to increase the maximum permitted commercial and community gross floor area by 18,000 sq. ft., to allow for the 2nd torey of the office building at 220 Brew Street to be used for either office or commercial and community use, not be supported as presented.

(Voting against: Mayor Clay, Councillor Dilworth, Robert Charbonneau, Glen MacRae)

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