Sicamous council approved a development permit for a 35 unit mobile home park to help create more affordable housing options in the district.
Although the planned development required a variance from the standards for minimum setbacks, from homes to the edge of mobile home park sites, and for the width of the landscaped buffer at the edge of the property, council chose to allow it to proceed.
The lots will be located on Hillier Road just north of the Eagle River. The new development will be right next to an existing strata mobile home park.
The variances council granted will allow homes to be slightly closer to the edge of the mobile home park site — 1.2 metres rather than the 2 metres specified in the zoning bylaw. The requirement for a landscaped buffer was removed where the new development meets a road or another property, and shrunk from two metres to one where the new mobile home park meets the existing one on its eastern boundary.
The presentation to council from development services manager Scott Beeching noted the owners of neighbouring properties were contacted and had no objections. Also in the report were concerns from the Sicamous Fire Chief about the variances creating limited space for firefighting.
Coun. Jeff Mallmes echoed concerns about fire preparedness, particularly in regards to a lane on the western edge of the development which is only three-metres wide. Beeching said it was possible the small lane could be widened if, in the future, the mobile home park is expanded onto the vacant property to its west. Mallmes said he remained in favour of the development but said it would be preferable if the lane was wider.
“The sidewalk and the road have been there for 12 years already. I think it’s time to put some places on it so we can hire some people in town,” Mallmes said.
Council voted unanimously to approve the development and its accompanying variances at its April 14 meeting.