Charlottetown planning board approves recommendation for new Holland College residences

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Charlottetown council approves zoning for Holland College residence

The Planning Board has approved the recommendation to rezone several Charlottetown buildings into student residences.

Greg Rivard, chairman of the city's planning department said the decision was made at a Planning Board meeting Monday night.

This comes after meetings hosted by the college with the current tenants of the buildings and with the public.

"We simply took information received at that public meeting and reviewed the information and the Planning Board made a recommendation that evening to council to approve the project," said Rivard.

The project would rezone several buildings along Cumberland and Grafton streets into a four-story student residence, and would also add additional off-site parking.

Residents and business owners in the area made it clear at the meeting that they were against the plan.  

"It was a difficult public meeting to attend," said Rivard. "We heard lots of sad stories."

But Rivard said when it comes to making these decisions, affordable housing is not a factor.

"When the planning board is reviewing the application, they have to consider what the mandate is of the council, and the mandate is not about, unfortunately, affordable housing," he said.

"It is to do with the application in its whole, and that's all the planning board could review and based on that they made a recommendation to council to approve.

Holland College representatives say once they purchase the buildings, residences will have two months to relocate.

Rivard said city council will vote on the project Apr. 10.

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