Council sends Bowker to public hearing

Oak Bay council has yet to set the date for residents to have a say

The bylaw for the proposed Cadboro Bay Road and Bowker Avenue development is officially headed for public hearing.

A narrow majority of Oak Bay’s municipal council feels the four-storey, mixed-use building proposed by Abstract Developments is ready for that public debate.

In Mayor Nils Jensen’s absence, Coun. Michelle Kirby chaired the council meeting Monday night where the bylaw required officially headed for public hearing. Coun. Kevin Murdoch remains away on vacation as well and Coun. Tara Ney called in to participate in the discussion and vote Monday night.

Couns. Eric Zhelka and Hazel Braithwaite opposed the bylaw.

Zhelka reiterated his concern over size and massing.

“I do truly believe we need a proper housing strategy in place before we approve something like this that will change the face of Oak Bay,” Braithwaite said.

The proposal includes commercial space on the ground floor facing Cadboro Bay Road and residential on Bowker Avenue with a courtyard garden in the central area of the pie-shaped property.

Lot coverage, massing appearance, traffic and parking continue to be concerns.

The bylaw would consolidate 2258, 2268 and 2276 Cadboro Bay Rd. as well as 2247 Bowker Avenue and rezone the consolidated lot to a new Comprehensive Development Use – Bowker Village zone.

A potential date and location for the public hearing has not yet been determined, but a resolution could be brought to council during its April 10 meeting.