Meliva Lane

Tuesday, January 26, 2021 2:37 PM

March 12th, 2020 

To: Saanich Planning Department 

Re: Gordon Head Residents’ Association (GHRA) Response to Referral  Application SUB00680, REZ00653, 1565 Mileva Lane

 The GHRA does not support this application to rezone 1565 Mileva Lane from RS12 to RS10 and RS12 to create one additional lot.

We acknowledge and appreciate the Applicant’s engagement of adjacent residents through meetings and an “open house” on February 25, 2020, and for her presentation to the GHRA Board in October 2019. The GHRA has not seen the consultation summary from the February 25 open house, given the need to provide our comments to the Saanich Planning Department by the end of February.

Several adjacent residents have conveyed their opposition to the application to the GHRA, the applicant, and Saanich officials. The GHRA shares their concerns. In summary:

1. Precedent: Parcels in this area of Gordon Head, between Ash Road and the waterfront, are zoned RS12. If this application is approved, we can expect several subsequent applications to subdivide these lots, leading to significant increases in density.

2. Additional Densification from Secondary Suites and Garden Suites in Newly Subdivided Lots, and Possible Relaxation of “Unrelated Occupants” Bylaw Provisions: These concerns are exacerbated by a lack of enforcement of existing bylaws. 

3. Inadequate Road and Sidewalk Infrastructure and Parking Issues: Eva Road and Mileva Lane are narrow, and lack curbs or sidewalks along most of their frontages. Two cars cannot pass each other on Eva Road without leaving the paved portion.  On street parking is already a problem: in some houses, the number of vehicles exceeds the number of off street spaces.

There have been two very similar applications involving a proposed single lot subdivision in the Gordon Head coastal area. 4577 Leyns Road was the subject of three unsuccessful applications to rezone a portion of an RS16 lot to create one additional RS14 lot fronting Leyns Road. All three were rejected based on concerns about precedent, impacts on neighbouring properties, and the streetscape. In recommending denial of the third application, the Planning Department Report of July 16, 2012 concluded “Supporting the subject application would be inconsistent with the Official Community Plan’s goal of focusing growth and the recent approach of not supporting rezoning applications in order to create additional single family lots along the perimeter coastline in Gordon Head. For these reasons, the application is not supported.” A similar application fronting 4588 Balmacarra Road was denied in 2011.  

Despite the fact that Saanich staff note that both a secondary suite and a garden suite are not allowed on lots single family zones, the reality is that Gordon Head has several examples of a principal dwelling, a secondary suite, and a garden suite on a single family zoned lot. Therefore, if this application is recommended for approval, we ask that a covenant prohibiting construction of any accessory buildings or structures having a combined gross floor area of greater than 3.0 m2 be a condition of subdivision approval of the two new lots.  Thank you for the opportunity to comment on this application.

Yours truly,

Chris Poirier-Skelton, Chair

Gordon Head Residents’ Association