Concept sketch of the Russell & Maple residential development located in front of the Oviedo Homes development. (Russell & Maple)

Russell and Maple application to go to city in January

Developer says project ‘not focused on making money’

The developer of the Russell and Maple housing complex, to be located parallel to the 13-storey mixed-use building by Oviedo Homes on Finlay Street across from Peace Arch Hospital, says he will be submitting a development permit to the city in the later part of January.

Raghbir Gurm and his development team held a public information session at Bean Around The World (1400 Johnston Rd.) Dec. 6.

After learning details of a number of two-storey townhomes, flats and penthouses in the 1500-block of Maple Street, members of the public and real-estate agents were asked to fill out a survey of the concept plan.

Gurm told Peace Arch News his team is still formalizing the plan, and will release it “as soon as it’s more concrete.”

“What’s next is we’re actually just compiling various consulting reports, traffic study, we completed a tree survey, that kind of stuff. We’re getting ready for a development permit to be submitted in the later part of January,” Gurm said.

Gurm’s team shared the results of the public information session survey, which was completed by 27 residents, with PAN.

Of the respondents, 89 per cent said a 100-per-cent residential property is appropriate for the site; 89 per cent support a combination of condominiums and townhouse units; and 77 per cent were in support of a development which runs four-storeys on the west side of the property down to a three-storey height along the street edges of Russell and Maple.

In addition to the formal survey, some residents requested more trees and greenery in the development. Other topics brought up by those who attended was affordability and rental, a lack of infrastructure (not enough schools, hospital space) and a request to keep individual entries at street level.

“We got to meet some of the people that are active in the White Rock area. We got a positive response from them as well, we feel confident that we have enough contacts now so that as we go along, we can sort of run ideas by them,” Gurm said. “We want to keep some continuous engagement going, we want the community to be involved.”

Gurm said that his team is “not shy of the idea of making money,” however, “it’s not focused on making money. Money follows a successful community engagement… I want the community to have a good experience.”

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