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Commercial development eyed for property adjacent the Vedder Bridge

Rezoning hearing for the proposed development on Vedder Mountain Road is set for Dec. 3
A rezoning hearing is set for Dec. 3 to consider a new commercial development on Vedder Mountain Road, with a proposed microbrewery. Pictured is a rendering of the proposal. (City of Chilliwack)

A major commercial development proposal adjacent the Vedder Bridge with a microbrewery and climbing gym will be the subject of a rezoning hearing on Dec. 3.

The property is at 45530 Vedder Mountain Road, which was used for years as a cottage site until it was purchased by Emil Anderson Construction officials in 2017, the applicants, as they were building the new adjacent bridge.

Council approved first and second reading of the rezoning bylaws on Tuesday, which aim to rezone sections of a property from CS2 Tourist Commercial to a C5 Night Club/Neighborhood Pub zone, and RSV1 (Limited Use Reserve - Remnant Area) along with OCP amendments.

A staff report from the Nov. 19 meeting agenda contained this description: “The proposed commercial development has been be comprehensively designed with the cooperation of the prospective tenants, in this case two (2) anchor tenants, a proposed micro-brewery/restaurant including a second-floor mezzanine and outdoor patio space, and a climbing/bouldering gym.”

The commercial complex will also have space for five additional commercial/retail tenants.

But despite the C5 zone including “night club” and “pub” in the name, those uses won’t be permitted, the report underlines.

“During the applicant’s public consultation process, concerns were raised by the public over the potential for the C5 Zoned portion to be developed into a Neighbourhood Pub or Night Club in the future. To address the public concerns and ensure that the land uses remain compatible with the local area, the applicant has volunteered to place a Restrictive Covenant on the title of the property to limit the use to a microbrewery only.”

The vision for the multi-unit commercial project focuses on “integration” of the surrounding riverside setting with materials that will complement “the landscape” and take advantage of the scenic views.

Proximity to the river is also being carefully addressed.

“The eastern portion of the property, which fronts onto the Vedder River, has been identified as being unsuitable for development due to the risk of flooding,” continues the report. “The proposal, therefore, includes rezoning the undevelopable portion to the RSV1 (Rem) Zone to ensure that this area remains undeveloped.”

The site is currently zoned CS2 - Tourist Commercial, and the CS2 zone would permit all of the proposed businesses eyed for the development — except for the microbrewery, which explains the need for the C5 rezoning.

“Because the microbrewery is proposing to sell food/beer to patrons onsite, very typical of micro-breweries, we are required to rezone the portion of the property in which the brewery is located to the C5 - Night Club / Neighborhood Pub zone,” according the the staff report.

Variances for setbacks and parking requirements will also be required.

READ MORE: Time lapse of Vedder Bridge construction

READ MORE: Emil Anderson chosen to build bridge


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Jennifer Feinberg

About the Author: Jennifer Feinberg

I have been a Chilliwack Progress reporter for 20+ years, covering the arts, city hall, as well as Indigenous, and climate change stories.
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