Council refers development proposal to heritage committee

·3 min read

Shelburne Town Council is referring an application for a proposed mixed-use commercial and residential development to the heritage committee before approval.

Council received the application for the site plan, proposing a three-storey mixed-used development at the vacant property of 121 Adeline Street in Shelburne’s downtown area, during their meeting on June 14.

“This is one of the smallest properties in Town, and it’s located on the east side of Adeline, on the north side of the existing public lane behind Main Street,” explained Steve Wever, town planner.

The proposed three-storey development will consist of a commercial suite on the ground level, and three two-level residential apartments with dedicated stairwells and private garages. Floor area of the commercial unit would be about 50 square metres or close to 550 square feet while the residential units would be around 700 square feet (350 square feet per level).

“The first floor of these residential units, being the second floor of the building, would be for common space, so kitchen and living room space,” said Wever. “In each unit the second story would be for one bedroom each.”

Based on the sleeping accommodations of one-bedroom units, the apartments will not be family-style but rather for one to two occupants. While the apartments have a private garage, each unit will only have space for one vehicle.

“There is no space for a second vehicle and that will be something that the tenant would have to bear in mind when leasing,” said Wever. “However, it meets the zoning bylaw requirements. We didn’t have a regulation that we could point to, to say you need to have two spaces per unit.”

Wever noted that it is common in downtown areas, even those in smaller communities, to have a parking standard of one space per unit.

The limited parking accommodations for residence of apartments is a concern for councillors.

“We really have a parking issue with the downtown currently in places for residence of apartments,” said Coun. Walter Benotto. “There has to be something that we can be able to provide parking spaces for these apartments and for these residents in newer buildings coming in.”

Prior to the proposed development application, the lot contained a two-storey commercial building which was removed by the previous owner in 2019. The previous property occupied nearly the entire property area and had no parking or landscape areas to service the building. The previous building also encroached slightly on the Town’s right-of-way on Adeline Street.

Although the property does not have any existing driveways, it can be accessed from Adeline Street or the existing lane along the south boundary of the property. Adjourning properties to the north and east contain existing commercial, mixed-use buildings.

The application for the three-storey building is proposing to use a similar footprint as the previous existing building, to the limits of the lot.

Despite a proposed 1.2 m setback of the main floor to accommodate the private garages along the lane, Coun. Lynda Buffet brought up concerns of visibility when backing cars out.

“The 1.2 meters was identified because that’s what the zoning bylaw says is required along municipal lanes. If one of these garage doors were facing Adeline the requirement would be six meters,” said Wever.

Convex mirrors were suggested by the applicant to improve sight line along the lane.

The next heritage committee meeting will be on July 7, with the next council meeting succeeding it on July 12.

Paula Brown, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Shelburne Free Press

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