July 26, 2011 - Minutes

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City of Richmond Meeting Minutes


Council Chambers

Richmond City Hall

6911 No. 3 Road


Mayor Malcolm D. Brodie

Councillor Linda Barnes

Councillor Sue Halsey-Brandt

Councillor Ken Johnston

Councillor Bill McNulty

Councillor Harold Steves


David Weber, Director, City Clerk’s Office, Corporate Officer


Councillor Derek Dang

Councillor Evelina Halsey-Brandt

Councillor Greg Halsey-Brandt


Call to Order:

Mayor Brodie opened the proceedings at 7:00 p.m.




Official Community Plan Amendment Bylaw 8728 and Zoning Amendment Bylaw 8729 (RZ 08-423207)

(8540 Alexandra Road; Applicant: Home Run Developments Ltd.)



Applicant’s Comments:



With the aid of a model of the proposed development, Architect James Hancock, IBI Group, provided a brief overview of the project and noted that the applicant and City staff have worked for two years on the proposed development, a fence will soon be erected on the site, the proposed hotel has 101 room, and two restaurants, and the proposed five-level parkade has 113 parking spaces.



The applicant commented that the project had to have at least 100 rooms to be viable.



Written Submissions:



Theresa P. Chong, 1702-5028 Kwantlen Street (Schedule 1)



Yong Deng, 1201-5028 Kwantlen Street (Schedule 2)



Bin Lin, 1201-5028 Kwantlen Street (Schedule 3)



Elaine Leung, 1808-5028 Kwantlen Street (Schedule 4)



David Wang, 1602-5028 Kwantlen Street (Schedule 5)



Mona Chow, 1202-5028 Kwantlen Street (Schedule 6)



Alvin Lin, 806-5068 Kwantlen Street (Schedule 7)



Kelly Shu Shang, Kwantlen Street (Schedule 8)



Xin Xin Sun, 501-5028 Kwantlen Street (Schedule 9)



No name, No address (Schedule 10)



Brian J. Jackson, Director of Development, provided Council with further details regarding the proposed development, including comments related to: the widening of Alderbridge Way and Alexandra Road to be undertaken by the applicant, approximately 25% of the site would be ceded to the City for road dedications, the main access to the site is from Alexandra Road, a lay-by is planned for Kwantlen Street, and a thorough transportation analysis of the area has been completed by the City’s Transportation staff. 



Submissions from the floor:



Ms. Keelson, 501-5028 Kwantlen Street, spoke in opposition to the proposed development and said that the proposed density of 3.0 floor area ratio was too high and there would be an increase in noise in the neighbourhood. She questioned how the City could recommend an amendment to the Official Community Plan to accommodate a new hotel when two other hotels exist on Alexandra Road.



Kelly Shu Shang, spoke in opposition to the proposed development, and advised that she represented ten residents who live at 5028, 5068 and 5088 Kwantlen Street. She submitted her statement in writing (attached to these Minutes as Schedule 8).



Ms. Shu Shang stated that area residents were under the impression that future commercial buildings in the area would not exceed four stories. She said that the increase in density in the area would create more traffic accidents in an area that already has a high vehicular accident rate, the health of area residents would be impacted by the increase in the noise in the area, residents who live in the area would have their views blocked by the proposed development, and the area already has two hotels.



A brief discussion took place among Council, Mr. Jackson and the Architect regarding the floor area ratio, the number of on-site parking places for the proposed development, and that hotels usually require fewer parking spots than residential developments, and that the separation between the proposed development and the surrounding existing residential towers is approximately double the usual minimum separation of 24 metres.



It was moved and seconded



That Official Community Plan Amendment Bylaw 8728 and Zoning Amendment Bylaw 8729 be given second and third readings.







It was moved and seconded



That Official Community Plan Amendment Bylaw 8728 be adopted.







Zoning Amendment Bylaw 8782 (RZ 10-557918)

(9099 Cook Road; Applicant: W.T. Leung Architects Inc., on behalf of Concord Pacific Developments Inc.)



Applicant’s Comments:



W.T. Leung, Architect, using display boards and a model, described the proposed project. He provided details regarding the number of residential units, the number of parking spaces, access to the site, the over-all project design, the distance between the proposed structures and the existing surrounding structures, the angle of shadowing, the sustainable features, the location of the outdoor amenity area, the provision for public art, the affordable unit component, the green roof, the aging in place provisions, the electric outlet receptacles in the parkade and the proposed bicycle co-op.



A brief discussion ensued among Council, Mr. Jackson, and Mr. Leung on topics including views from existing residential units, shadowing, parking on roads in the area, density, construction, and local schools.



Written Submissions:



Yu Ning Zhan, 1006-6333 Katsura Street (Schedule 11)



Chun Bao Zhang, 506-9188 Cook Road (Schedule 12)



Alice Tam, 1605-9188 Cook Road (Schedule 13)



Desmond Yi Zhou, 57-8355 Delsom Way, Delta, BC (Schedule 14)



Wen Zhou, 1601-9188 Hemlock Drive (Schedule 15)



Lindan Zhou, 1601-9188 Hemlock Drive (Schedule 16)



Petition, 111 residents of Cook Road, Katsura Street, and Jack Bell Drive (Schedule 17)(received July 21 and 22 and July 26, 2011 at the Public Hearing)



Petition, 48 residents of Hemlock Drive, Cook Road, Granville Avenue, Hogarth Drive, Auburn Drive, Ash Street, Katsura Street, Richmond, and Delsom Way, Delta (Schedule 18)(received July 26, 2011 at the Public Hearing)



Amy Chan, 1306-9188 Cook Road (Schedule 19)



Lesley Ka Mun, 808-9188 Hemlock Drive (Schedule 20)



Jane and Ronald Wong, 1305-9188 Cook Road (Schedule 21)



Stanislav Romashin, 906-9188 Hemlock Drive (Schedule 22)



Kwok Ho Ma, 1103-9188 Cook Road (Schedule 23)



Lai Fong Ng, (Schedule 24)



Daniela Nicolae, 1108-6233 Katsura Street (Schedule 25)



Leo Kan, 1602-9188 Hemlock Drive (Schedule 26)



Leo Kan, 1602-9188 Hemlock Drive (Schedule 27)



Mariana Lee and Alexander Lum, 1506-9180 Hemlock Drive (Schedule 28)



Winnie So, 1105-6233 Katsura Street (Schedule 29)



Yan Xia Mai, 105-9188 Hemlock Drive (Schedule 30)



Danny Mah, 9188 Hemlock Drive (Schedule 31)



Tabitha Thomas, 1703-9133 Hemlock Drive (Schedule 32)



William Lee, 1503-9188 Cook Road (Schedule 33)



Kenneth Chan, 802-9188 Cook Road (Schedule 34)



Nancy, 9133 Hemlock Drive (Schedule 35)



Nancy, 9133 Hemlock Drive (Schedule 36)



Submissions from the floor:



Mr. Chow, 6333 Katsura Street spoke in opposition to the proposed development. He noted that more cars in the area would add to the congestion already in the area, and that too many cars are parked on area streets. He added that he was unable to acquire an extra parking space in his building’s parkade, and this situation adds to parking congestion outside his building.



Mr. Chong, 9188 Hemlock Drive spoke in opposition to the proposed development, and especially to the high-rise component, and explained that residents usually own two cars and that the addition of the proposed development would bring more cars into an already crowded area. He said that car owners park their cars on Cook Road overnight, and he described as a ‘headache’ attempts to drive in the area and to access Garden City Road. He added that the area has many trees and stated he was opposed to the loss of trees on the subject site.



Andy Wong, 9188 Hemlock Drive spoke in opposition to the proposed development and said that the area’s infrastructure and current parking capacity could not support it. He was concerned that high speed driving endangered children and parents accessing the day care centre the corner of Garden City and Cook Roads.



Mr. Wong questioned the capacity for an increase in enrolment at the local schools, and noted the potential fire hazard represented by the nearby BC Hydro installation. He questioned the effectiveness of the proposed audible pedestrian signal at the Garden City/Cook Road intersection, and wondered who would be responsible if any damage was done to his residential unit as a result of the introduction of the proposed development in his area.



Lincoln Chan, 9133 Hemlock Drive spoke in opposition to the proposed development and noted that since the opening of the Canada Line, buses had been routed away from the area making travel by vehicle necessary.



Mr. Chan also stated concern regarding: parking spaces on Cook Road are daily occupied by 4:30 p.m., traffic flow in the area is as large a concern as the lack of parking, the shadowing on existing area structures will be a result of the proposed development, the danger to area children as a result of traffic interruption during the construction period of the proposed development, the bonuses the applicant is receiving in exchange for various amenities offered compared to the lack of bonuses earlier developers in the area received, the developer is unlikely to comply with the affordable housing plan, and the potential for airplanes to fly, or crash, into high rise developments.



Mr. Chan added that a thorough analysis of the feasibility of the proposed development should be undertaken.



Calvin, 9133 Hemlock Drive spoke in support of the proposed development and said that it would improve the appearance of the area by ridding the subject site of trees, racoons, bugs and former derelict houses. He welcomed the proposed new concrete sidewalk along Cook Road, and said that the proposed development would help increase area property values.



The speaker also noted that there were parking spots available in his building for $60/month so he surmised that the parking problems in the area may be an issue for the strata councils to address.



Mr. Chan, 9188 Cook Road spoke in opposition to the proposed development and noted that maximum density of 3.12 floor area ratio is untested in the area and it is unknown if the existing infrastructure can support the proposed development.



Mr. Chan stated further concerns, including that the air flow in the area will be disrupted by the proposed development, the proposed green roof may be too small to mitigate changes to the environment, the proposed low rise components would warm up at night despite the green roof, the proposed expansion of the public path and greenway system at the Garden City Community Park could affect the ecology of the park, and views would be blocked.



Mr. Chan questioned why the proposed paving of the two tennis courts in Garden City Community Park was part of the development plan, and he noted that an earlier “Sun Tech” project had failed.



Ms. Wong and Vicki Burkholder, both of 9188 Hemlock Drive, spoke on behalf of 200 area residents who opposed the proposed development, and they submitted a petition (attached to these Minutes as Schedule 18).



Ms. Wong was concerned that more population density would increase traffic, and noted that during morning and afternoon rush hours current area residents have half hour waits to access Garden City Road. She stated concern regarding blocked views, a decrease in sunlight, and the narrow separation between the proposed structures and existing area residences.



Ms. Burkholder added that area residents experience traffic problems and parking problems now. As a member of her strata council she knows that there are no further available off-street parking sites. She said that area residents do not know what is going to happen to a vacant lot across from 9188 Hemlock Drive. She questioned who would accept responsibility for the first child injured while crossing the street.



Jeff Lam, 9373 Hemlock Drive, spoke in support of the proposed development and stated that the City’s high-rise residential towers attract wealthy immigrants who bring finances and jobs to the City, and that this is a good thing for entrepreneurs like himself and for Richmond’s economy. He added that he understands the problems related to limited on-street parking spaces.



Mr. Kan, 9188 Hemlock Drive, spoke in opposition to the proposed development and, despite the applicant’s proposed $500,000 for Garden City Community Park enhancements, he questioned how the density increase from 1.6 floor area ratio to 3.12 floor area ratio could be justified. He noted the existing number of high-rise residential towers in the area and questioned the need for more people living in the area.



Noting the minimum 24 metre separation between the existing high-rise tower and the proposed high-rise tower, Mr. Kan stated that Richmond is not Vancouver, New York City or Hong Kong, and said that people do not want to live in a built up area.



Neil McCallum, 9339 Alberta Road, spoke in opposition to the proposed development and stated that taking public transit to and from the area is not an option. He said the area is very congested, with parked vehicles creating a narrowing of area streets, and questioned what would be done to solve the problem when construction trucks are introduced into the area. He recognized the new amenities proposed by the applicant, but said they seem more suited to an industrialized area. 



Nancy, 9133 Hemlock Drive, spoke in opposition to the proposed development and said so many buildings, so close together, diminish the privacy of area residents. She noted that the proposed buildings are to be built in a small area, that there was only one small park for area residents, and stated concern that if a disaster took place it would be difficult to move people out of the area.



Alice Tam, a resident of Cook Road, spoke in opposition to the proposed development and stated that Cook Road was not meant to accommodate so many high-rise towers, that it is a very busy road, it is jammed with vehicles as people try to leave the area to get to workplaces, and that the frequent stops make Cook Road dangerous.



Ms. Tam added that the proposed increase in density means more people on Cook Road, and that people living in the proposed affordable units in the area presented a security issue. She said that the area is already condensed, and suggested that other locations in the City could be designated for increased density. 



Robert Desmeules, 1702-9188 Cook Road, spoke in opposition to the proposed development and stated that zero street parking exists at present. He stated that the sidewalk proposed by the applicant would complete a sidewalk that is already halfway there, and that the proposed 142 residential units represents a 25% increase in the population of the area with a minimum addition of 200 cars. He remarked that the area is too dense, too dangerous, and that there are too many people in too many spaces.



Philip Chung, 1306-9188 Cook Road, spoke in opposition to the proposed development and expressed concern with the lack of parking spaces near the child care centre and stated that it is only a matter of time before a child is struck by a car. He noted the green aspect of the proposed bicycle co-op, but said that the Canada Line permits only one bicycle on board per car during rush hours.



Mr. Chung said that on-street parking in the area is already congested and that he parks his second car at a five-to-ten minute walking distance from his residence. He added that there are no loading zones in the area for use by moving companies, and that the area is already dim at twilight and that the addition of another high-rise residential tower will further decrease natural light.



Edwin, 6333 Katsura Street, said he liked the proposed project, but stated his concern with traffic flow along Cook Road, and with accessing Garden City Road. He stated that the six existing buildings in the area are well spaced, but that the proposed buildings are out of proportion with the original development of the area.



He was concerned with construction trucks in the area during the construction period and he suggested that the City approve a traffic management plan before, not after, any rezoning is allowed. He requested an explanation of a potential traffic management plan.



A resident of unit 602-9188 Cook Road spoke in opposition to the proposed development and said that Cook Road is busy during the morning rush hour. He was concerned regarding the potential for construction vehicles blocking Cook Road during the construction phase of the proposed project.



Mr. Grey, an area resident, spoke in opposition to the proposed development and stated that 196 parking spaces for 142 residential units were insufficient. He noted that the potential for an injury to children who attend the area’s day care centre is not an issue related to the proposed development, but is related to how child care is undertaken.



Mr. Grey said his concerns were related to construction noise, dust created by construction, blocked views, the potential for change to continue during the coming years, and the need for more living places for people who move to the City.



Mr. Grey noted that that City needs increased population in order to increase the tax base, and that the City has an overall plan to develop this area.



Ms. Ying, 9188 Cook Road, spoke in opposition to the proposed development and stated that the view from her fifth floor residential unit would be blocked by the proposed project, that there is a strong air flow between the existing buildings, and that sand and dust in the area during the construction period would lead to respiratory problems, and would seriously compromise the health of area residents.



The Mayor acknowledged the conclusion of the first round of speakers. The following then spoke for a second time on new information.



Mr. Lincoln Chan, 9133 Hemlock Drive, remarked that area structures have to survive a potential earthquake, and that many people in the neighbourhood would be injured in the event of an earthquake. He added that the applicant’s model did not include all buildings in the area, thereby misrepresenting the neighbourhood.



Mr. Chan also noted that the new residents of this new building might also be discontented due to the problems outlined this evening.



Mr. Chow, 6333 Katsura Street, questioned why the applicant could not add two more stories to the proposed parkade, in order to provide more spaces to take parked cars off the surrounding streets.



In response to questions Mr. Jackson confirmed that the site met zoning bylaw requirements for parking.



Mr. Jackson stated that the proposed development would have a loading area on site, off the street, and that all garbage and recycling would be handled onsite, not on the street.



Further, Mr. Jackson confirmed that, with redevelopment, there would still be parking on the north side of Cook Road, and that the proposed building height of 45 metres was part of the Official Community Plan (OCP) since 1996.



Mr. Jackson reviewed the benefits that accrue to the City in return for consideration of higher density, and he briefly discussed the proposed built form as it related to the projects to the north and the south.



Finally, Mr. Jackson outlined the content and timing of the Construction Management Plan.



It was moved and seconded



That Zoning Amendment Bylaw 8782 be given second and third readings and that the following conditions be met prior to Zoning Amendment Bylaw 8782 receiving fourth reading:




Council consideration of a Traffic Management Plan in conjunction with the Development Permit; and 




that a covenant be registered on the building/development proposed for 9099 Cook Road regarding the possible redevelopment in the immediate area of 9099 Cook Road.







It was moved and seconded



That staff:




review traffic patterns in the proximity of the development proposed for 9099 Cook Road generally and in relation to the existing daycare facility;




review the steps that can be taken to advise owners and residents in the immediate area regarding proposed developments; and




review the public transit plan to measure the adequacy of bus service in the area.







Zoning Amendment Bylaw 8783 (RZ 10-539727)

(7531 and 7551 Bridge Street; Applicant: Xue Yan and Han Liu)



Applicant’s Comments:






Written Submissions:






Submissions from the floor:






It was moved and seconded



That Zoning Amendment Bylaw 8783 be given second and third readings.











It was moved and seconded



That the meeting adjourn (10:06 p.m.).







Certified a true and correct copy of the Minutes of the Special Meeting for Public Hearings of the City of Richmond held on Tuesday, July 26, 2011.




Mayor (Malcolm D. Brodie)


Corporate Officer

City Clerk’s Office (David Weber)