Townhouse project may pave way for traffic problems, residents fear

Plans to build 46 units in City lead to plenty of questions at public hearing

  • Oct. 15, 2012 11:00 a.m.

Plans to construct a total of 46 new townhouses within two separate but related projects in the City of Langley have been met with some hesitation on the part of residents along the municipality’s western border.

But it’s not the buildings themselves that are causing the most concern — it’s all the vehicles that invariably come with them.

The proposal, which went to a public hearing on Oct. 1, calls for 33 units of three storeys each, to be built at 19728, 19738, 19754, 19764 and 19770 55A Ave. and another 13 units at 19765 and 19773 55A Ave.

Several area residents who  appeared before council raised concerns over the strain on parking that accompanies multi-family residential developments.

Seven visitor spaces have been allotted for the larger of the two developments, which meets the requirement of .2 visitor spaces per unit, but one resident suggested the developer could do better.

“It’s a beautiful project,” she said. “My concern is the opportunity to increase visitor parking.

“There is already a lack of parking and cars lined up on both sides (of the street).”

Vehicles parked along the sides of the road also block the view of drivers making left turns onto the street, another woman said.

Architect Fred Adab pointed out that the developer had opted for lower density than zoning in the area permits — noting there are already two condominiums in the immediate vicinity.

He explained that some areas were blocked to traffic altogether, creating a pedestrian-friendly environment.

But traffic isn’t residents’ only reservation about the project.

A resident of nearby Huntsfield Green expressed concern about the ability of a retaining wall in between the properties to withstand the construction. She is also worried residents will lose privacy once the three-storey units are built.

“Is it possible to have better retaining wall, and a higher wall, built?” she asked.

City engineer Gary Vlieg replied that the proponent of the project is responsible for ensuring that the integrity of the wall is maintained.

The two developments will be built concurrently and once construction begins, it is expected to take between eight and nine months to complete.

The developments passed third reading later in the meeting.