Parking, building heights and privacy issues dominated discussions.
The Open House hosted by City of Chilliwack last Thursday for residents of Chilliwack Proper and Fairfield Island drew 80 people to Evergreen Hall.
It was the latest in a series of engagement efforts to collect input on the draft plan for these neighbourhoods with an eye to creating interim plans for increased density.
“It was great to see the interest from the crowd,” said Coun. Ken Popove.
He said the tone of the room was respectful and there were good discussions about the increased density some of Chilliwack’s oldest neighbourhoods.
“Some don’t want change but unfortunately it’s coming,” Popove said. “It may not happen tomorrow but it’s coming.”
There were about 81 attendees at the Nov. 30 Open House, and the process of neighbourhood planning has been ongoing for about a year.
“The City’s long range growth strategy envisions this area will accommodate moderate densification, increasing from a population of 9,000 to 13,000 by 2040,” according to the documents online.
In recent years, redevelopment pressures have been experienced east of downtown, where “older homes on large lots” are reaching the end of their life expectancy.
With the exception of the area immediately east of Broadway, the planning area consists of properties that are primarily designated in the Official Community Plan for ‘low density residential’ development, allowing for a “mix of single family detached, duplex, coach houses and appropriately scaled townhouse development.”
Apartments will not be considered.
A draft plan will be presented at an open house in early 2018 for feedback before taking a final draft plan to Council. Residents receive mailed notices for the upcoming open house.