Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Fairview Heights

If you ever go by the northeast side of the Highway 1 and Highway 15 interchange, you will notice that there is an empty lot with a road that goes from nowhere to nowhere. Originally, it was going to be home to a Thrifty Foods grocery store and various other big box retailers. In 2008, a mixed-use development with 841 units was proposed for the site. On May 9th, the proposal was revised to reduce the number of units to 596 due to market conditions.

Fairview Heights - Proposed Mixed Use Development. Click Image to Enlarge
Even with the reduction in units, this is still a pretty large development. What I notice about this development and others in the South of Fraser is that we do a good job with residential development and density. A surface parking lots is usually hard to find in a residential developments, but it still seems that commercial developments are focused around a parking lot and this project is no exception. I can think of a few reasons why this is the case. The first reason that pops into my mind is that while surface parking lots are all but banned in municipal bylaws for most multifamily developments, this isn't the case for commercial developments. The other reason could be that because there is still so much greenfield developable land, surface parking is still considered "cheap" to build as we haven't been forced to be smarter with what we build.

Hopefully the new Highway 1 RapidBus will make a stop at this project when it opens.

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