Only a handful of Peachland residents came to have their say at a public hearing held on Tuesday evening for the redevelopment of the Todd’s RV site.
The hearing, which wrapped up in around 40 minutes despite including presentations from both the planning department and the developer, was held to give the public an opportunity to respond to a proposal to amend the OCP and a zoning bylaw that would allow for a residential tourism development at the current site of Todd’s RV & Camping.
Back in January the developer conducted a public information meeting that drew a mix of praise and concerns from residents.
In response to concerns expressed about height, a subsequent visual impact analysis conducted by the developer indicated there would be negligible visual impact, Peachland council were told in March, when they unanimously gave first and second readings to the bylaws.
Porchlight Developments is proposing to build six six-storey buildings and four luxury beachside bungalows at 3946, 3966 and 3976 Beach Ave., which are located along the north end of Beach Ave. on a four-acre semi-waterfront property.
The proposal has the six-storey stepped-floor buildings set back closer to the highway with four bungalows placed closer to Beach Ave.
“We have taken care to place the taller buildings nearest the highway to the north and adjacent the existing buffer strip and existing resort to the west, and place single family and a large landscape buffer adjacent the single-family homes to the east,” states the website for the development.
To facilitate the upgrade of the campground to a 46-unit tourist/residential project, the developer is proposing an application to rezone the site to CD11 Todd’s Resort Comprehensive Development Zone from C6 Campground and R1 Single Detached Residential.
The CD11 Todd’s Resort zone allows for tourist accommodation and vacation resort residential accommodations.
“The vision in this area focuses on accommodating tourists visiting Peachland with neighbourhood specific policies that encourage taller buildings, invite pedestrian exploration, step building heights down from Hwy 97 to the lake, encourage the creation of public amenity space, and screen parking,” said planner Lor Pellegrino in her public hearing report. “Preferred future land uses include tourist commercial and related uses, medium density multi-unit residential, parks and open space.”
Two Lakeshore Gardens residents attended the hearing and came forward not necessarily opposed to the project, but to express concerns about noise, parking, security and potential conflict between guests and residents.
The town would like to see a trail constructed going from Beach Ave. in and around the site up to the Trepanier Bench and Hwy 97 intersection. At the hearing, the developer stated he is proposing a $100,000 contribution in lieu of constructing the trail.
Peachland resident and Trail of the Okanagans president Janice Liebe said she’s very supportive of the project and happy to see the removal of Beach Ave. parking from the latest plans that have been presented. However, she asked the developer to “be a little bit nimble,” work with the active transportation group and engage in a dialogue because the pathway “is a big deal”. She also suggested that access points to the property be reduced from three to two.
In addition to the people who attended the public hearing, the district received six comments: one was in favour and five were opposed.
“We’ve had many opportunities to sell and the developers that we have finally hooked up with look like they’re going to do a bang up job and we’re very happy with them,” said property owner Graham Todd.
Resident Keith Thom said the Todds have served Peachland well for 65 years and deserve to retire. He described the development as a “fine looking project” and came to say “kudos”.
The Todd family still own the property and will be operating their business for the current season; Porchlight has an option to purchase if their application is approved by Peachland council.
If the proposal goes ahead the developer would also be required to pay a Community Amenity Contribution (CAC). Based on the design concept with 46 units, and using the current residential rate of $1,877/unit, the total CAC for this development is estimated to be $86,342.