With spring being the start of what promises to be a busy residential construction season on available building lots in the area, attention is now turning to developing more lots for sale in anticipation of a continuing demand for housing.
In Terrace, the majority of rezonings to allow subdivisions are taking place on the bench.
This past winter, after being earlier turned down by city council, Emil Wirtl was more successful the second time in gaining a zoning amendment for property at 5034 McConnell Ave. on the bench.
The amendment means he can divide a 10-acre parcel into 30 residential construction lots.
At 4934 Twedle Ave., just south of Uplands Elementary, also on the bench, owner Colleen Froese is looking for approval to rezone property from agricultural AR1 to R2.
She recently submitted a plan for five new residential lots to be built alongside a large existing home, said city director of development services David Block.
One city zoning initiative currently underway is to end the rural residential zone called RR1 which is the zoning for large rural-type parcels.
That’s to prevent sprawl as population pressures increase.
The move is called for in the city’s official community plan.
Meanwhile, a smaller, four-lot development just recently went onto the market on the corner of Bailey and Jolliffe on the bench.
That’s close by Ecole Mountainview and in the general area of the last large-scale development of residential lots on the bench.
Construction there mainly halted in the early part of the last decade when the regional forest industry collapsed.
Empty lots there are now being filled up as part of the increase in housing construction this year.
Behind Ecole Mountainview, developer Mike Scott, who owns M & M Ventures, wants to buy a section of provincial Crown land for a 60-lot subdivision to take up 15 acres.
It’s now a forested and unofficial recreation area.
“The interest in further residential subdivision on parcels such as the Crown land reflects anticipation in the development market for increasing demand and coming population growth expectations,” said Block.
“If/when [liquefied natural gas] final investment decisions start being made we will see this interest in development increase even more,” he added.
On North Sparks, also on the bench, Stan Kinkead was successful in receiving a rezoning of property for a multi-family townhouse development of up to nine units.
Controversial in nature because of its perceived impact on the area, the development would, however, need no further rezoning unless the plan is to develop the townhouse as a strata title project.
In Thornhill, Scott’s M & M Ventures is involved in another application for the purchase of provincial Crown land.
This could involve as many as 124 lots on as much as 100 acres below Crescent St. leading toward Hwy16 and bordered by Paquette on one end and by Sharples on the other.
As with the bench application in Terrace, the proposals are now being evaluated by the province.
This Thornhill development prospect, although large, is not the only nor it is the largest that could take place in that community.
A company which already owns lands in Thormhill wants to expand an existing subdivision into upward of 200 new lots.
A company called Thornheights West Estates Ltd. currently owns the land located off of Walnut and Hawthorne.
Company spokesman Harry Eichhorst said the plan has been in the works for some time and the money is in place, that the company is has begun the application process.
Two other subdivision proposals are currently being processed for Thornhill, according to planner Ted Pellegrino of the Kitimat-Stikine regional district.
“There’s one on the Thornhill bench for a three-lot subdivision. There’s another one on Old Lakelse lake road near the pub,” he said.
The one on Old Lakelse Lake Road is where a trucking company was located just south from the Thornhill Pub on at 3556 Old Lakelse Lake Road.
Pellegrino said the new owner wishes to subdivide the property into seven lots.