City News, Briefly – Yukon News

An overview of the issues discussed at the Whitehorse City Council meeting on May 2.

Proposed Development Incentive

The developer of a condo project in the Whistle Bend neighborhood could be the latest recipient of the town’s development incentive.

Pat Ross, director of city lands and property services, presented a recommendation board to approve the incentive to build an 18-unit apartment-style complex at 190 Olive May Way.

Three buildings on the 0.228 hectare property will each include six two-bedroom units.

The project meets the criteria for the Comprehensive Incentive for Multifamily Residential Development (RCM2), which provides eligible developers with development fees that they would otherwise be required to pay. In this case, the development costs are estimated at $39,330.

To benefit from the incentive, the density of a development must be 50% higher than the minimum required in the MRC2 zone. In this case, the minimum density would require 17 units.

As Ross explained, the incentive policy is intended to encourage smaller, denser housing in targeted areas.

“This development meets the minimum density requirements needed to qualify for an RCM2 area development incentive and complies with all city zoning regulations, he said. “Therefore, the development incentive application is subject to board approval.”

Com. Ted Laking wondered what the parking requirements would be, pointing out that as Whistle Bend sees more dense developments, parking becomes a bigger concern.

Ross confirmed that the developer will be required to provide one parking space per unit.

Extension of the proposed property

A Second Avenue property could be expanded to include a small corner section currently designated as an unused thoroughfare.

At the Whitehorse City Council meeting on May 2, a recommendation was presented to council that would initiate the bylaw process for the owners of 2050 Second Ave. buy the land of 41.92 square meters, the first stage of the consolidation of the corner piece with the property.

The addition would eventually see the property grow to 454.81 square meters.

As explained by Pat Ross, director of the city’s land and property services, the owners plan to construct a new building with a parking space.

“However, the large corner cut in the southeast corner of the lot creates an irregular lot configuration that limits the building’s design potential,” he said.

The corner piece was originally put in place as an offset from the train tracks when the larger lot was established in 1950.

A lamppost and a space of two meters around it at the corner would remain the property of the city.

“As per the land disposition policy, the land would be sold at fair market value determined by an independent private appraisal, Ross said, noting that the value was appraised at $23,500.

The owner has signed an agreement for the potential sale and if the settlement is passed for the sale, the owner will pay a 10% deposit.

The balance would then be due on September 30.

The board will vote on the first reading of the bylaw at its May 9 meeting.

Ideas for transit

The cancellation of the new City Hall project could present some opportunities for the city’s transit system, Whitehorse City Council members said at their May 2 meeting.

Steward Forest Pearson made a presentation to Council largely focusing on bus opportunities in the city.

Construction and renovation of a new City Hall structure at its current location on Second Avenue was canceled in April after bids ran nearly $10 million over budget. These plans included a proposed transit hub that would have provided indoor space with seating, restrooms, and options for purchasing transit tickets.

When the city announced the project’s cancellation, Mayor Laura Cabott stressed the importance of working toward the project’s goals even if the full project did not go ahead, pointing to the transit hub, as well as much-needed improvements to City Hall as will be needed. .

Pearson suggested the city consider ways to help better build the community through this, pointing to the possibility of a transit hub at Third Avenue and Main Street with a change in routes from bus so that public transit runs along Third Avenue instead of Second Avenue.

He pointed out that city parking at Main Street and Third Avenue is often underutilized. A building there could serve as a transit hub, potentially with offices for city staff and possibly even living quarters.

Such a move would remove buses from busy Second Avenue, he said. With more people using Third Avenue for transit and perhaps for bicycling and walking, if it became more of a designated green street for such uses, there could also be economic benefits for more businesses. .

“That’s kind of the idea in a nutshell…we’re looking at something bigger here, something that builds community and really promotes other forms of transportation and makes it a lot more inclusive,” he said. declared. “You know, right now, if you’re taking the bus and you’re standing on the second [Avenue], it’s a pretty hostile place. There could be a much friendlier environment and a more inclusive space.

A petition for heritage designation

An online petition calling for Hotel ’98 to be declared a municipal heritage site was presented to Whitehorse City Council on May 2.

Ryan West started the petition on earlier this year. It has since attracted nearly 5,000 people adding their names to it.

As West pointed out in his presentation and in the preamble to the petition, ’98 is one of the last “authentic” hotel lounges in the territory, the other being the Westminster Hotel in Dawson City.

The ’98 holds the second-oldest saloon license west of Winnipeg and opened as the ’98 Ballroom in 1943, he said. It converted to a ’98 Hotel at the end of World War II and in June 1951 the cocktail bar opened. Since 1982, it has hosted a weekly violinist evening which continues every Thursday.

West said that in addition to the many people who have lent their names to the petition, the Yukon Historical and Museums Association has also indicated it is willing to provide a letter of support.

West also cited the city’s Petition, Plebiscite, and Referendum Bylaw that says the city must call a referendum if a petition is received from at least 25% of city voters, or 2,000 voters, whichever is lower. Although he acknowledged that his online petition would not meet the specific criteria required for a petition to trigger a referendum, West said he brought it up as a way to show ‘overwhelming support’ for the designation. .

Contact Stephanie Waddell at [email protected]

Whitehorse City Council