North Saanich approves Habitat for Humanity development

North Saanich approves Habitat for Humanity development

27-home complex has 10 affordable units

A new North Saanich development, with 10 homes dedicated to Habitat for Humanity, will likely go ahead.

The 27-home project recently passed third reading by council. The development, by Reay Developments Ltd., will be on three lots (2166 and 2172 Bakerview Pl., as well as 9270 Lochside Dr.). The plan still requires fourth reading and covenants to be registered, but North Saanich councillor Murray Weisenberger said those are formalities, and the development has passed its largest hurdle.

The value of the land donated to Habitat for Humanity is worth $1.2 million according to developer Brian Berglund, and it will be the largest single project ever undertaken by Habitat for Humanity Victoria.

“I’m so, so proud of having that come through,” said Weisenberger. At the meeting, he said he felt it was the greatest accomplishment of this term.

In a follow-up interview, Weisenberger said he felt the developer took the right approach by asking councillors individually what they wanted to see in a project before submitting plans.

Habitat for Humanity works with families and developers to provide homes for families by selling homes at a fair market value, financed with no-down payment, no-interest mortgages set at a maximum of 30 per cent of the family’s gross income. Families invest 500 hours of their own labour, called “sweat equity,” into building their home.

If a Habitat for Humanity homeowner wishes to upgrade, they sell their home back to Habitat so another family in need can take advantage.

“This project has us working with a developer to achieve something that wouldn’t be possible without their incredible land donation,” Habitat for Humanity Victoria CEO Yolanda Meijer previously told Black Press.

Weisenberger said while there was some desire for a beach access to be provided by the developer, he felt the idea was introduced too late in the process to be fair.

Mayor Alice Finall said at the meeting that while she opposed the project in the past, she did not oppose it at this stage after hearing from Habitat for Humanity and neighbours.

However, she continued to have concerns about the development’s proximity to soil that still needed remediation from airport runoff. She also preferred to have the developer improve beach access.

Weisenberger said tNorth Saanich could improve beach access themselves at a later date, since it was not a lengthy or steep access point.

Neighbours were largely supportive because of the affordable housing component, which encompasses 37 per cent of the development.

Those opposed were concerned not with the project’s aims, but rather speeding cars which would endanger people backing out of driveways and effects on wildlife.

Coun. Geoff Orr said that in the future, both North Saanich and Sidney could approach the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, which maintains the nearby Pat Bay highway, to assess traffic concerns.

Meijer said at the meeting that they were hoping to set a precedent and foster similar partnerships with developers, “because I think it’s really a model of what can happen when you get a for-profit, a not-for-profit, and a municipality working together” to address a systemic problem in the region.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

As cyclists and pedestrians pass by at Humboldt and Government streets, a garden of blooming black-eyed Susans brightens up the northwest corner of the Fairmont Empress Hotel property on a partially sunny November afternoon. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)
Keep your umbrella handy for the next while around Greater Victoria

November has lived up to its reputation as one of the rainiest months of the year

A spokesperson for the Peninsula Country Market is upset that their third and final Winter Market won’t happen this Saturday in Central Saanich’s Centennial Park following moves by the municipality. (Facebook/Peninsula Country Market)
Central Saanich postpones weekend Winter Market, organizers upset

Lorea Tomsin said municipality’s move runs counter to provincial direction

Victoria-Swan Lake MLA Rob Fleming moves to the role of transportation minister in the NDP’s new cabinet. (B.C. government file photo)
Greater Victoria MLAs claim key roles in new cabinet

Transportation, Indigenous relations, children and family development ministries headed by locals

Penny Hart is emotional outside the Saanich Police Department as she pleads for helpt to find her son Sean Hart last seen Nov. 6 at a health institution in Saanich. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
VIDEO: Mother of missing Saanich man begs public to help find her son

Sean Hart last seen leaving Saanich mental health facility Nov. 6

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Nov. 24

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(AP Photo/Haven Daley)
POLL: Do you think the current COVID-19 restrictions should continue beyond Dec. 7?

One week into the new restrictions to curtail the spread of the… Continue reading

Police in Nanaimo are looking for a suspect who wore a black-and-white striped hoodie and rode a yellow mountain bike when he allegedly stole three children’s backpacks from a daycare facility. (Photo submitted)
VIDEO: Thief steals children’s backpacks from daycare in Nanaimo

Suspect rode a yellow mountain bike and made off with backpacks hanging on fence

Arthur Topham has been sentenced to one month of house arrest and three years of probation after breaching the terms of his probation. Topham was convicted of promoting hate against Jewish people in 2015. (Photo submitted)
Quesnel man convicted for anti-Semitic website sentenced to house arrest for probation breach

Arthur Topham was convicted of breaching probation following his 2017 sentence for promoting hatred

Langley School District's board office. (Langley Advance Times files)
‘Sick Out’ aims to pressure B.C. schools over masks, class sizes

Parents from Langley and Surrey are worried about COVID safety in classrooms

The Klahoose First Nation village on Cortes Island is under lockdown until further notice due to a positive COVID-19 test. Photo courtesy Kevin Peacey.
Cortes Island First Nation community locked down due to positive COVID-19 test

Klahoose First Nation has had one positive test, one other potential case

Ladysmith’s 1st Avenue will be lit up until January 15. (Cole Schisler photo)
Light Up parade a no-go, but Ladysmith’s streets are still all aglow

Although the tradition Light Up this year was cancelled, folks can still enjoy the holiday lights

The baby boy born to Gillian and Dave McIntosh of Abbotsford was released from hospital on Wednesday (Nov. 25) while Gillian continues to fight for her life after being diagnosed with COVID-19.
B.C. mom with COVID-19 still fighting for life while newborn baby now at home

Son was delivered Nov. 10 while Gillian McIntosh was in an induced coma

Most Read