Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Public Hearing: 13-Unit Townhouse Project on Corner of 53rd and 198th

Last night, Langley City Council hosted a Public Hearing for two bylaws that, if approved, would facilitate a 13-unit townhouse development at the corner of 53rd Avenue and 198th Street.

Rendering of the proposed project at 5324-5326 & 5334-5336 198 Street. Select image to enlarge.

Before the Public Hearing, the City’s Advisory Design Plan, which includes architects, landscape architects, the RCMP, an accessibility representative, and members of the public, who all volunteer their time, reviewed the project and made the following recommendations:

  • Update the roof design
  • Update the door materials and colour
  • Vary colour palette for each townhouse block
  • Add Juliette windows on the second floor along the internal driveway and a balcony over the electrical room
  • Add larger ground-floor windows along 198th Street
  • Add additional back patio screening between back yard areas and additional screening along 198th Street
  • Upgrade the entire east fence
  • Utilize more durable fencing material along project edges
  • Provide rendering to show the proposed building at the corner of 198th Street and 53rd Avenue

Except for varying the colour palette of each townhouse block, the proponent accepted the advice of the Advisory Design Plan.

For the public hearing, Council received six pieces of written correspondence which included a 103-signature petition. Ten members of the public attended the public hearing over Zoom, and six members of the public spoke to Council about the proposed development.

Generally, concerns from the public included density, shadowing on adjacent properties, green space, the urban heat island effect, on-street parking, tandem parking garages, and safety at the intersection of 198th Street and 53rd Avenue.

To address some, but not all, of the concerns about shadowing, the project’s proponent proposes to setback the buildings 4.5 meters in the rear yard area.

Shadow study for the proposed project at 5324-5326 & 5334-5336 198 Street. Select image to enlarge.

For green space, City staff noted that they would require extensive street trees along the property perimeter in addition to the proposed nine trees within the property.

Landscaping plan of the proposed project at 5324-5326 & 5334-5336 198 Street. Select image to enlarge.

For intersection safety at 198th Street and 53rd Avenue, City staff are investigating extending the curb bulges to reduce traffic speed and reduce on-street parking to increase visibility at the intersection.

Members of Council, including myself, questioned the use of tandem parking garages, though this garage style has existed in the City for at least 20 years. Staff noted that a new zoning bylaw is in the works, which will include reviewing tandem parking.

Staff also noted that a parking management study for the whole community is part of the 2021-2025 Financial Plan.

The next step for these bylaws will be for Council to consider third reading at a future meeting.

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