Space issue delays townhouse project

A local builder is seeking to construct a 160-unit townhouse development in Clearview Ridge.

A local builder is seeking to construct a 160-unit townhouse development in Clearview Ridge.

On Monday, Red Deer’s municipal planning commission considered an application by Avalon Central Alberta for site development approval for the project as a discretionary use within the new subdivision west of 30th Avenue and south of 67th Street. Residential blocks containing five, six, seven or nine units each are proposed, with two- and three-bedroom homes ranging from 1,100 to 1,200 square feet.

Avalon is also seeking a relaxation of the minimum required frontage to 4.57 metres (15 feet) from 6.1 metres (20 feet). The development would be located at 30 Carleton Ave., adjacent to a proposed commercial centre to the east.

Although the city’s Inspections and Licensing Department indicated it supported the development, members of the commission voiced concerns about the lack of open space.

“It may conform with the land use bylaw per se,” said city manager Craig Curtis. “I don’t believe it conforms with the intent or spirit of our neighbourhood planning guidelines and standards.”

Parkland Community Planning Services planner Brandon Silver said Avalon tried to improve connections to adjacent amenities like the commercial area and park space. It’s improved lighting, included trees on the streets, staggered the development and used a diversity of colours and materials, he added.

“All these are above what is normally required in a development like this.”

But members of the commission wanted to see more detail, including landscaping plans.

Curtis suggested that Avalon discuss its plans further with city planners and seek ways to break up the building mass and provide more open space. A motion to table the application for up to two weeks was passed.

Speaking after the meeting, Avalon partners Jonas Neidert and Trevor Gamelin said they would like to start construction this year. They added that the units would likely be built to a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) or Built Green standard, and have prices ranging from about $230,000 to $250,000.