The South Vedder area of Chilliwack. (City of Chilliwack)

The South Vedder area of Chilliwack. (City of Chilliwack)

Chilliwack city hall receives positive feedback for increased density in south Vedder area

But residents in single family homes in Sardis Park area aren’t so keen on densification

Chilliwack is one of the fastest growing municipalities in B.C. so there will be increasing pressure on decision makers to figure out exactly where new housing should go.

Residents tend to prefer to see more density along urban corridors and not so much in areas that traditionally have only had single family homes.

Two examples of this go to public hearings at Tuesday’s (April 19) city council meeting. But even before the public hearing is held, feedback illustrates enthusiastic support for density in one area and staunch opposition in the other.

City council is set to incorporate the South Vedder Neighbourhood Plan as part of the city’s 2040 Official Community Plan.

The South Vedder Neighbourhood is east of Vedder Road and directly below Promontory, also shares boundaries with Tzeachten First Nation, and Vedder Road forms the western boundary.

The city held an online public survey for the area from Feb. 15 to March 4 where respondents were asked to provide their level of support for the long-term land-use plan in the area, which includes apartment buildings up to six storeys. Of the 30 responses received, 83 per cent either “liked it” or “liked most aspects” of the plan.

“While all areas of the city are experiencing growth, the South Vedder Neighbourhood has considerable potential to accommodate new opportunities for development, in the form of infill densification and redevelopment,” according to the staff report.

Density makes the most sense, and is generally deemed acceptable by residents, adjacent to main roads like Vedder where housing has proximity to commercial offerings and transit.

But modest density is coming just about everywhere in the city.

“Older neighbourhoods that were developed at lower densities will accommodate modest infill development to achieve a diversity of housing needs as housing stock ages and demand for smaller, more affordable forms of housing continues to increase.”

That quote is also from the South Vedder Neighbourhood draft plan, and hints at the ongoing practise of subdividing larger single family home lots into two, or increasing density even more with townhomes.

At the same meeting on Tuesday, city council will consider a zoning amendment for a property on Lake Drive near Sardis Park. And while the rezoning is consistent with the OCP designation for the area, neighbours don’t like it.

The city received four letters/emails of opposition along with multiple petitions with a total of 36 signatures of opposition.

Those opposed commented that the subdivision would lead to too much traffic and safety of pedestrians and children.

As for the South Vedder Neighbourhood Plan, it was prepared in advance of the creation of a Vedder Neighbourhood Plan, which is anticipated to be undertaken in 2023.

The public hearings for these and other rezonings or variances will be held at the 6 p.m. portion of the city council meeting on April 19.

To see the South Vedder Neighbourhood Plan in more detail visit www.engagechilliwack.com/southvedder.

READ MORE: South Vedder planning process latest to be launched in Chilliwack

RELATED: South Vedder planning starts


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Existing properties including the art at the roundabout at the south end of Vedder Road. (City of Chilliwack)

Existing properties including the art at the roundabout at the south end of Vedder Road. (City of Chilliwack)