Maple Ridge council turns down bypass development

Proposal included residential, commercial for along Lougheed Highway

Maple Ridge council has said no to plans by Qualico Developments to build 285 detached homes, townhouses and row homes, plus a grocery store at the eastern entrance to downtown.

Instead, it wants to hold out for a better use of the 45 acres of Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure lands that straddle Lougheed Highway, just west of Kanaka Way.

“They’re not offering something to the community that’s going to use those lands in a way we really need,” Maple Ridge Mayor Nicole Read said Wednesday.

“We want to see better. We need living wage jobs in this community. So we’re hesitant to give up property to residential that may actually serve a different purpose down the road.”

That’s not a blanket no to any kind of development for the property that could serve as the eastern gateway to central Maple Ridge.

Council just wants to see a better use of the land, other than for more residential, plus a small grocery store or medical offices, the latter of which already exists nearby, said Read.

She said the commercial component of the proposal that was discussed at Tuesday’s council meeting, “is not big and its not significant,” and it’s not what the public is seeking in the downtown.

Read isn’t sure if the company will come back to council with a new offer.

An April 20 staff report also says that the 38,750-sq. feet proposed for shopping, including a grocery store similar in size to Cooper’s Foods on 240th Street, would threaten the economic viability of the town centre.

The commercial portion proposed for Lougheed Hwy. “could be a threat to the growth, momentum and well-being of the town centre area,” according to the report.

“Success of the commercial centre on the subject site could be at the expense of town centre sustainability.”

The property, is listed in the Commercial and Industrial Strategy as a possible site for a business park, has been considered for a post-secondary institute that Maple Ridge is trying to attract.

According to staff, Qualico Developments’s consultant said it would be too expensive to regrade the sloped and ravined land to make it suitable for commercial or industrial uses.

G.P. Rollo and Associates, another consultant often used by the city, supports that conclusion.

The land is not considered “feasible as business park lands,” staff say.

“However, other employment-generating uses that have not been assessed may be appropriate for this site.”

Instead, staff have offered other options for developing the site involving a smaller portion of commercial.

“Council wants to see a more rigorous exploration of what commercial and industrial [use] is possible on that land,” Read said.

 

Just Posted

Kanaka Open Mic celebrating 10 years in Maple Ridge

The 10th anniversary celebration will be taking place June 19

Burrards lose in Victoria

Maple Ridge WLA squad hosts Salmonbellies on Sunday

UPDATE: Multiple fires along the railway tracks in Pitt Meadows

Firefighters asking CP rail to close tracks

Maple Ridge coaches and players on Team BC

Heading to California tournament with 15U team

Maple Ridge woman reported missing now located

Police have spoken with Karen Gorrie, reported missing in May

Dog at Maple Ridge SPCA needs spinal surgery

Miniature pinscher has painful condition known as Wobbler Syndrome.

MPs hear retired B.C. nurse’s petition to change compensation for fatal medical errors

Teri McGrath wants provinces to implement no-fault system for medical errors

Horgan says he’ll still defend B.C. coast after second Trans Mountain approval

Meanwhile, one B.C. First Nation has announced plans for a legal challenge

Metro Vancouver’s air quality could be the worst yet this wildfire season

As wildfire season approached, Metro Vancouver experts predict the air will be an issue for many

Demonstrators on either side of Trans Mountain debate clash in Vancouver

Crowd heard from member of Indigenous-led coalition that hopes to buy 51% of expansion project

Grieving B.C. mom hopes Facebook message leads to new investigation into son’s Surrey homicide

Criminal Justice Branch didn’t lay charges, concluding no substantial likelihood of murder or manslaughter conviction

B.C.’s measles vaccination program gains traction in May

More than 15,000 doses of the MMR vaccine has been administered across the province

B.C. farmers concerned Agricultural Land Reserve changes choking their livelihood

Dozens voice concerns at special meeting hosted on Vancouver Island

UPDATE: Two-year-old involved in Chilliwack pool drowning has died

Toddler was reported to not be breathing as air ambulance called out Thursday afternoon

Most Read