Elevated home eyed for Crescent Beach

City staff believe proposal a “unique response” to rising sea levels

City of Surrey staff are recommending council approve a rezoning proposal that would allow the construction of an elevated home in Crescent Beach.

Applicant Elizabeth Mackenzie Architect is proposing a dwelling with a 2.4-metre-high uninhabited space at the ground level within the Crescent Beach floodplain at 2954 O’Hara Lane.

The city staff’s report on the rationale of recommending approval calls the proposal a “unique response” to changing sea levels.

The purpose of the rezoning, from Single Family Residential (RF) to Comprehensive Development (CD), is to allow an increase of building height, and reduce the east and west yard setbacks to accommodate more stairs.

“Based on Provincial Sea Level Rise Curve for year 2100 and local wave effects, the future Flood Construction Level (FCL) requirement for Crescent Beach is expected to increase by more than a metre from the current FCL of 3.3 metres above sea-level,” the report states.

“Staff support the proposed application as a pilot project for the construction of flood tolerant buildings in the Crescent Beach floodplain.”

READ ALSO: Surrey mulls relocating 400 Crescent homes in decades to come

READ ALSO: ‘Managed retreat’ option dropped from Surrey’s coastal flooding strategy

The applicant is proposing a three-storey single-family home on the 6,488-sq.-ft. lot, which fronts the beach.

“The purpose of the proposed construction is to anticipate, and provide for, increased flood proofing requirements and rising flood elevations in the future. The uninhabited space at the ground level will also maintain the existing carrying capacity of the floodplain in a flood event,” the city report states.

The report says the proposed regulatory changes in the application are not intended to be implemented broadly in Crescent Beach, at this time.

“The outcome of the proposal will be reviewed and considered in future land use and flood adaptation plans for the Crescent Beach area.”

The application received third reading Dec. 3. but has yet received final adoption from the city.

Neither Mackenzie nor city staff have responded to Peace Arch News’ request for comment on the proposal.

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