Planning Committee Meeting Minutes - May 16, 2000





Tuesday, May 16th, 2000


W.H. Anderson Room

Richmond City Hall


Councillor Malcolm Brodie, Chair

Councillor Bill McNulty, Vice-Chair

Councillor Linda Barnes

Councillor Lyn Greenhill

Councillor Harold Steves

Call to Order:

The Chair called the meeting to order at 4:00 p.m.




That the minutes of the meeting of the Planning Committee held on Tuesday, May 2nd, 2000, be adopted with amendments to Page 4, Item 6, by:


deleting the word and figure "only 1.5", and by substituting the following, "approximately 12"; and


deleting in the fourth line of the resolution, the word "dyke" which appears first, and by substituting the word "road".



The next meeting of the Planning Committee will be held on Tuesday, June 6th, 2000, at 4:00 p.m. in the W. H. Anderson Room.

It was moved and seconded

That the order of the agenda be varied to deal with Item No. 8 at this time.




(AG 00-084495 - Report: Mar. 6/00, File No.: AG 00-084495) (REDMS No. 138367, 144196, 143541, 144181)

The Chair advised that he had received correspondence from the applicant (dated May 16th, 2000), which indicated that he would like to pursue another option for the development of his property. As a result, the Chair requested that the matter be referred to staff for further discussions with Mr. Rangi.

It was moved and seconded

That the report (dated March 6th, 2000, from the Manager, Development Applications), regarding an Application By Darshan Rangi for Non-Farm Use at 6120 No. 5 Road, be referred to staff for discussion with the applicant regarding the utilization of the subject property under the present guidelines.




(RZ 98-147632 - Report: May 15/00, File No.: 8060-20-7115/7050) (REDMS No. 150802, 152174, 151797)

The Manager, Development Applications, Joe Erceg, reviewed the report with Committee members. Senior Planner/Urban Design Suzanne Carter-Huffman, then used a site plan to explain (a) the various options which had been put forward as a result of previous discussions with the City and the School District, and (b) the option now being recommended by staff. She indicated, in response to a question, that the proposed option would allow driveway accesses, trails, and other types of public connections could be incorporated into the project, subject to the completion of the required land assemblies.

The Secretary-Treasurer, School District No. 38 (Richmond), Ken Morris, accompanied by the Manager of Facilities, Mr. Garry McLean, came forward and indicated that they were prepared to respond to any questions which the Committee have regarding the proposed option. Reference was made to correspondence received on this date from the Chair of the School Board, regarding the acquisition of properties in the subject area, and it was agreed that this correspondence would have to be addressed at a closed meeting.

Advice was given by Mr. Morris that a representative of the traffic consulting firm engaged by the School District to undertake a traffic study on the various options, was in attendance to present his report.

Mr. Peter Joyce, P.Eng., of Bunt & Associates, then reviewed the four options, during which he described how access would be provided in each case and the impact which these accesses might have on adjacent streets with respect to traffic movement. He indicated that projected traffic conditions over the next 5 years, based on (a) existing traffic conditions on Granville Avenue, Alberta Road and No. 4 Road, (b) traffic which would be generated by the school, and (c) experiences with other secondary schools with respect to projected inbound and outbound trips, indicated that the existing traffic system would be sufficient to accommodate the additional traffic. He stated that based on the analysis undertake on these projections, the option which best suited street traffic movement was Option "D", with a single right-in/right-out access onto No. 4 Road; with the easterly access to Granville Avenue allowing inbound traffic only, and the westerly access permitting only outbound traffic.

Mr. Joyce noted during his review of the four options, that the proposed catchment area for the MacNeil School would be located north of the school, and that traffic movement from the school in the afternoons would be best served by option "D".

Mr. Joyce referred to the number of parking stalls proposed for the school site (216), and indicated that an additional 30 spaces would be available for on-site passenger drop-off and pickup. He voiced the opinion that the 216 parking spaces should be sufficient to accommodate both students and staff.

In response to questions, Mr. Joyce advised that the issue of potential traffic backup at the Granville Avenue and No. 4 Road intersection caused by vehicles existing the easterly driveway on Granville Avenue and turning left had been reviewed. He was of the opinion that because of the location of the driveway 70 metres from the intersection, that this would not be a problem. (Reference was made to the traffic study, and the Chair requested that a copy of the full report be made available to City staff for inclusion with the staff report.)

Mr. Norm Tilbe, of 9580 Alberta Road, who also represented the owners of the two properties located immediately to the east of his property, noted that the staff report indicated that "the School Board has assured the City that it is actively working on the expansion of its Anderson/MacNeill site." He expressed concern that to date none of the properties deemed to be required for the expansion of the site had yet been acquired, and suggested that the application should be delayed until such time as these properties were purchased. Mr. Tilbe noted that the staff report did not contain a time limit for the acquisition of these properties, and he questioned whether affected property owners would be forced to wait another 4 to 10 years. He suggested that the School District could acquire these properties immediately by signing a Section 3 agreement with the property owners. Mr. Tilbe noted that the School Board had indicated that properties would only be acquired at fair market rates, and advised that the owners had always been willing to sell at this rate. He stated however that the only way to accomplish this would be to sign a Section 3 agreement, and until that occurred, the rezoning application should not be allowed to proceed.

Mr. Al Schuss, of 9660 Alberta Road, also voiced concern about the lack of activity on the part of the School Board to purchase the properties, and supported the suggestion that the signing of a Section 3 agreement was the only way to proceed. He agreed with the comment of the previous speaker that the application should not be allowed to proceed to the building permit stage until the needed properties had been acquired.

In response to a question about approvals given to the School Board to acquire properties, Mr. McLellan explained that a letter had been sent by the Ministry of Education to the School Board, indicating that the Board would not be required to acquire all the needed properties prior to construction of the school. He further advised that the City had not yet approved any permits relating to the construction of the new school.

Mr. Charles Clouda, of 6651 No. 4 Road, agreed with the statements of the previous speakers about the acquisition of properties, and voiced the opinion that this issue had to be addressed before the application was allowed to proceed. He noted that the school site had already been preloaded and expressed concern about a significant pool of stagnant water which had accumulated in the area of the drainage ditch. Mr. Clouda also questioned how on-site parking would be accommodated if he failed to reach an agreement with the School Board about the acquisition of his property, and Council had approved the construction of the school.

Mr. McLellan advised, in response to a question from the Chair, that the rezoning application only involved those properties which were currently controlled by the School District. He stated that in the event that the School Board did not acquire Mr. Cloudas property, the zoning on that property would remain as residential. Mr. McLellan further advised that in the event that the School District did not acquire Mr. Cloudas property, an alternate parking plan would be implemented which involved the two City-owned properties on Granville Avenue. Mr. McLean then provided information on how this proposal might be accommodated.

In answer to further questions, Mr. McLellan confirmed that the OCP designation dictated that the property would eventually be acquired as part of the school site plan, and until that time, the zoning on Mr. Cloudas property would remain residential.

Ms. Julia Fraite, the owner of 6571 and 6573 No. 4 Road, addressed the Committee on the proposed rezoning application. A copy of her submission is attached as Schedule A and forms part of these minutes.

In response to concerns voiced by Ms. Fraite about the zoning designation of her property in the event that the School Board did not acquire this land, Ms. Carter-Huffman advised that the property north of the No. 4 Road access had not been included in the zone which would allow school use. She stated that an amendment would be required to the Official Community Plan to permit a school use, and that no building would be permitted on the property in the interim until a development proposal had been received by the City. Ms. Carter-Huffman further advised that the property could not be used to provide parking because this use was not considered to be a school use.

The Chair referred to concerns voiced by Mr. Clouda about the pool of stagnant water, and Mr. McLellan advised that he would raise the issue with the Richmond Health Services Department.

Ms. Fraite then read into the record, correspondence from Mary Campbell, of 6991 No. 4 Road, and Mohammed and Paula Bhamji, of 6971 No. 4 Road, who voiced their concerns about the new proposal for the MacNeill Secondary School. A copy of this correspondence is attached as Schedule B and forms part of these minutes.

In response to the concerns expressed by Ms. Campbell and Mr. & Mrs. Bhamji about the potential for the future development of their properties, Mr. Erceg explained that the timing of future development would be driven by the market and the aspirations of the individual owners. In response to a question about the feasibility of combining the access to property located adjacent to the School Board access proposal, Mr. Erceg suggested that that option could be explored, however he commented that the City was not seeking the provision of a formal access agreement over the property in question.

Mr. Roland Hoegler, of 6560 No. 4 Road, questioned whether (a) the school would be in operation for the entire year rather than the current 10 month session; (b) the traffic consultants had considered these staggered hours of operation when completing the analysis of the anticipated traffic movements to and from the school; (c) the catchment area would remain as proposed or would students from the entire City be attending the school, if the school was in operation 12 months a year, and (d) construction of the school should be delayed because of the decline in student enrollment.

In answer, Mr. Morris advised that no decision had been made on whether the MacNeill School would operate on a modified calendar. He stated however that as programs were reviewed for the school, it might be possible that a modified calendar might be considered. He added that this was one of many options which were being proposed for the site. Mr. Morris also commented on Mr. Hoeglers statements made with regard to the decline in school enrollment, noting that construction of the school would eliminate the use of portables at several other schools located in the area, including Cambie Secondary School.

Mr. Fred Carron, of 9820 Alberta Road, referred to a statement in the staff report, that "the proposed school building is poorly sited relative to the proposed pockets of residential development along No. 4 Road and views from Granville Avenue", and that "the School District has indicated that the school building cannot be relocated or re-oriented due to resulting costs and delays". He suggested that these statements indicated to him that the process was not properly undertaken. Mr. Carron also expressed concern about the lack of sufficient land for playing fields, and noted that staff supported the application, subject to certain conditions being completed. He questioned whether the rezoning application was dependent upon the acquisition of the properties on No. 4 Road and on Granville Avenue. At this point the Chair advised that the Committee could not discuss land acquisition issues.

Mr. McLellan also noted that an address given in the report was in error, and should read 6631 No. 4 Road and not 6671 as indicated in the second bullet of part (b) on page 9. He confirmed that the properties referred to on Page 7 had already been acquired by the School Board, and that construction of the school was not conditional upon the 5 additional properties being acquired.

Discussion then ensued between the Chair, staff and the delegation on (a) whether a building permit would be issued to allow the construction of the school without these 5 properties being acquired, (b) how an alternate parking plan would be implemented; and (c) the provision of playing fields.

In concluding his presentation, Mr. Carron asked what the City could do to assure residents that the development of the school site would proceed in a proper manner. He voiced concern that the result would be a large school on a small site, and he questioned whether the best interests of the residents were being considered.

A brief discussion then ensued among Committee members on the merits of delaying their decision until they had had the opportunity to address the correspondence received from the School District on land acquisition issues. As a result of the discussion, the following tabling motion was introduced:

It was moved and seconded

That a decision on the Application by School District No. 38 (Richmond) for rezoning at 6551, 6591, and 6611 No. 4 Road and 9611, 9631, and 9755 Granville Avenue from "Single-Family Housing District, Subdivision Area F (R1/F)" to "School & Public Use District (SPU)", be tabled until the conclusion of the open agenda.




(RZ 99-168971 - Report: Apr. 25/00, File No.: 8060-20-7131) (REDMS No. 149666, 150002, 150025)

Mr. Erceg briefly reviewed the staff report with Committee members. In response to questions about the possibility that a dwelling could be located at the rear of the irregularly shaped lot, Mr. Erceg advised that a restrictive covenant would be required as part of the subdivision approval process to ensure that this would not occur.

It was moved and seconded

That Bylaw No. 7131, for the rezoning of 22611 Westminster Highway from "Single-Family Housing District, Subdivision Area F (R1/F)" to "Single-Family Housing District, Subdivision Area C (R1/C)", be introduced and given first reading.




(Report: May 4/00, File No.: 7000-09-01) (REDMS No. 146079)

The Manager, Land Use, Terry Crowe reviewed the staff report with the Committee.

Discussion then ensued among Committee members and staff on the proposed guidelines. Advice was given by Mr. Crowe that in normal circumstances, public art would remain in place for 7 years, however, Council would have the right to initiate a move at any time. He further stated that the policy would ensure that the decision making process was carried out with the involvement of the public and all potentially affected stakeholders.

Reference was made to Part 4(c) of the proposed guidelines, which indicated that "Give the artist or sponsor the first opportunity to buy back the work at the current appraised value", and questions were raised about whether this section would be applied to the estate of a deceased artist or sponsor. In answer, Mr. Crowe advised that the estate of an artist or sponsor would also be included as a potential purchaser.

Concern was voiced that the proposed de-accession guidelines policy statement was very onerous, and discussion took place on possible amendments to the proposed guidelines.

It was moved and seconded

That the Public Art Public Art Program Policy 8707 be amended by adding Appendix F to the Public Art Program Policy entitled "De-accession Guidelines For Removing Artwork From City Owned Sites", subject to the following amendments being made to Appendix F:


under Policy Statement, the deletion of Parts 2 and 3; and


under Part 4(c) of Procedures, the addition of the word "estate" following the word "sponsor".

The question on the motion was not called, as the following referral motion was introduced:

That the report (dated May 4th, 2000, from the Manager, Land Use), regarding De-Accession Guidelines for Removing Art Work from City-owned sites, be referred to staff for review.


It was moved and seconded

That the order of the agenda be varied to deal with Item No. 7 at this time.




(Report: Apr. 26/00, File No.: 8060-20-7068) (REDMS No. 150136, 150156)

It was moved and seconded

That Bylaw No 7068 which amends Schedule A of Business Regulation Bylaw No 6902 to include #1085-8580 Alexandra Road and #100-5960 Minoru Boulevard among the geographical areas in which a video arcade may operate, be introduced and given first, second and third readings.

Prior to the question being called, the Manager, Zoning, Alan Clark, briefly reviewed the report. Concern was expressed about the location of the proposed facility on Minoru Boulevard rather than in a shopping mall with inside access, and whether this would lead to the same problems which the City experienced with these facilities in the 1980s. In response, Mr. Clark advised that a majority of the approvals given during the past 5 years were in facilities located outside of a shopping centre. He noted that the RCMP reviewed each application and undertook background checks on the applicants prior to staff making a recommendation on the application. Mr. Clark further advised that if problems occurred with the operation of a facility following approval of the application, the City could revoke the operators business licence.

The question on the motion was then called, and it was CARRIED.



(Report: Apr. 11/00, File No.: 4045-20-04-WA) (REDMS No. 147505)

Planner Jenny Beran reviewed the report with Committee members. Discussion then ensued among Committee members and staff on the proposal, during which the following information was provided:


if the London/Princess area was not declared a Heritage Conservation Area, it was feasible that the owners of the existing heritage homes in that area could demolish their dwellings


development guidelines could be established for the construction of future townhouse projects


staff were working with the owners of the existing heritage homes which staff would like to see maintained as heritage homes, however, the onus was on the owners to place restrictive covenants on their properties which would prevent the dwellings from being demolished; the City could not force the placement of such a restriction on the property if the owner was not interested in preserving the dwelling as a heritage building, other than perhaps offering compensation


design guidelines and Official Community Plan regulations were in place which would help to achieve the goals contained within the Heritage Conservation area (HCA) criteria.

Mr. Doug Phillips, of 6211 Dyke Road, supported the establishment of a Heritage Conservation area for the London/Princess area. He noted that Steveston was characterized by large cannery buildings and simple houses used by fishermen in earlier years, while the London/Princess area offered a slightly different and more distinct rural atmosphere in nature. Mr. Phillips also provided a brief history of the London Farm House and McKinney House, and he challenged the Committee to continue what had already been started in the area, and to use the HCA regulations to ensure that the area became more vibrant.

Mr. Phillips referred to the height of the McKinney House, and questioned if these regulations had been in place, whether the City could have required the owner of the house to place the house at a lower elevation. In response, advice was given by Mr. McLellan that the Ministry of Environment had a more sympathetic treatment of heritage homes and might have allowed the home to placed on a lower foundation, however, each application was considered on a case by case basis.

Mr. John White, of 6431 Dyke Road, also supported the implementation of HCA regulations, and commented that if these regulations had been in place, the height of the McKinney would probably have been lower than it now is. He questioned whether City staff had considered any other legislation or options, and in response, Mr. McLellan stated that there were other processes available through subdivision approvals and contractual obligations to place building controls on a site.

Mr. Crowe further explained that the City had considered the future of the area when undertaking its examination of the Official Community Plan, however, a full review of all the situations which might arise in the London/Princess area was not undertaken. He stated that staff proposed to review each application on a case by case. Mr. White responded, however, that this approach has resulted in uncertainty in the neighbourhood and suggested that there had to be a better way to address the problem.

Mr. White advised that he had contacted a representative of the Provincial Governments Heritage Department, who had indicated that Provincial heritage regulations were in place, however, it was the responsibility of individual municipalities to implement these regulations. He noted that property owners in the area were already protecting what they had and were upset to see the addition of a new development which would not be compatible with the surrounding homes.

Mr. White commented that the only way to proceed would be to send this matter to Council or to a public hearing to determine the wishes of all people, not just the users of the dyke, on the proposal.

Concern was expressed by Councillor Steves about the possibility that homes surrounding the Curtis Eyestone property (McKinney House) would be lower in height, and could be demolished if the proposed HCA regulations were not implemented.

In response, Mr. McLellan explained the process followed by the Ministry of Environment and noted that that department had specifications in place relating to minimum elevations. He added that the Ministry was encouraging the City to adopt a bylaw which specified floodplain elevations throughout the entire City. He stated that this could have implications on areas which were not so designated, and that staff hoped to report on the advantages and disadvantages of this proposal later in the year.

Mr. Dana Westermark, of 13400 Princess Street, supported the staff recommendation as he was of the view that the issue of providing design and development guidelines could be achieved through a Comprehensive Development zone, which would require comments from the Heritage Commission and the Advisory Design Panel. Mr. Westermark voiced the opinion that the design guidelines now being applied to his development were more than adequate. He expressed concern about the delays which had occurred with regard to his proposed development, and voiced the opinion that another level of approval was inappropriate given that he was already one year through the development process.

Mr. Westermark voiced agreement with the previous speakers that the London/Princess area was a unique area and that care had to be taken in developing the property. He stated that he was taking that care and that staff were being very diligent in responding to heritage concerns.

Discussion then ensued among Committee members and the delegation on the potential height of his proposed project. Information was provided that because of floodplain requirements, it was not possible to have residential uses on the ground floor; as a result, Mr. Westermarks development would be elevated 5 feet by placing the parking under the buildings. Mr. Westermark added that site coverage was under 30% and that a majority of the area would be open space.

In response to further questions, Mr. Westermark advised that:


it was his belief that a heritage designation would be feasible once the buildings were constructed


the development was already being designed with heritage characteristics as part of the Development Permit process, and he was unwilling to add features other than what was already being proposed


he did not want to wait until the HCA regulations were in place because this would delay his project even further and would take it beyond the time frame required to complete the project


he had gone to great lengths to respond to the wishes of the City's Planning section and did not want any further delays; he would be happy to voluntarily designate the site as heritage once the project had been completed.

At the request of the Chair, and in response to the comments made by Mr. Westermark, Ms. Beran explained that the HCA process would be identical to the process which he was now completing as part of the City's existing Development Permit Guidelines. Further information was provided that only the Ministry of Environment would be able to permit reduced floodplain elevations.

Mr. Westermark then provided information on the proposed ground levels of his development, and he commented on floodplain requirements for the City. He noted that many of the townhomes in Richmond had been constructed with one storey down to the existing ground level, which is an acceptable alternative.

A brief discussion ensued among Committee members about the fact that the Committee was being asked to make a decision without the benefit of reviewing the plans for Mr. Westermarks development. As a result, the following tabling motion was introduced:

It was moved and seconded

That the proposal to take no action to pursue the establishment of a Heritage Conservation Area for the "Heritage Residential" area in the London/Princess area be tabled until such time as applications for this area have come forward.


OPPOSED: Cllr. Greenhill



(AG 00-084495 - Report: Mar. 6/00, File No.: AG 00-084495) (REDMS No. 138367, 144196, 143541, 144181)

See Page 2 of these minutes for action taken on this matter.

It was moved and seconded

That the public be excluded from the meeting of May 16th, 2000, in accordance with Section 242.3 of the Municipal Act on the grounds that the item next under consideration falls under clause (e) of Section 242.2(1) of the Municipal Act (6:25 p.m.).


The open meeting reconvened at 6:47 p.m.

It was moved and seconded


That No. 7115, which amends Official Community Plan Bylaw No. 7100 by:


amending Schedule 2.10C (McLennan North Sub-Area Plan) by repealing and replacing Attachment 1 ("Land Use Designation & Circulation System" map); and


introducing a number of text amendments affecting the area designated for Community Park/School use, Principal Roads within that area, and related Development Permit Guidelines,

be introduced and given first reading.


That Bylaw No. 7050, for the rezoning of 6551, 6591, and 6611 No. 4 Road and 9611, 9631, and 9755 Granville Avenue from "Single-Family Housing District, Subdivision Area F (R1/F)" to "School & Public Use District (SPU)", be introduced and given first reading.

Prior to the question being called, Committee members expressed their support for the project, noting that:


even though the school should not be constructed without playing fields, the School Board, in the past, had been diligent in acquiring needed properties prior to the opening of a particular school


the School Board had made a tremendous effort to resolve outstanding issues; and the Committee now had to operate in good faith and trust that the remaining land acquisitions issues would be addressed


now was the time for the application to proceed to public hearing; once this process had been completed the School District could begin negotiations with the affected property owners


Option D opened the school site to Granville Avenue which meets the requirements of the City


City and School District officials and staff had been flexible in the configuration of the proposed site, and now was the time to forward the application to the next level.

The question on the motion was then called, and it was CARRIED.


It was moved and seconded

That the meeting adjourn (6:50 p.m.).



Certified a true and correct copy of the Minutes of the meeting of the Planning Committee of the Council of the City of Richmond held on Tuesday, May 16th, 2000.



Councillor Malcolm Brodie


Fran J. Ashton

Executive Assistant