Developer lays out exterior design for housing project

Saint Andrews council is awaiting an interior site plan and a development agreement before it gives the final approval on a major housing project for the town.

The 42-unit affordable housing development at 302 Mowat Dr. is being proposed by Tressa Bevington, of Compass Housing Inc. In order for the project to move ahead, Saint Andrews council needs to give third reading of a municipal plan amendment and rezoning application.

In an interview, Bevington said she is currently working with town staff to find out what type of interior renderings are required by council to proceed. She recently presented to Saint Andrews council several renderings of the building's exterior from different angles.

The design of the two-storey building has been finalized, she said in an interview, but the exterior colours, which appear white, beige and grey on the renderings, are not finalized. At a previous council meeting, Bevington showed updated site plans for the project that included increased parking spaces, the addition of balconies on some units and maintaining as much greenery as possible.

When asked by the Telegraph-Journal, Bevington declined to provide the cost of the building's construction and said she could not speak to the construction timeline.

"The timeline moves quite a bit from day to day, it just depends," she said.

"We hire all local companies to do our builds, so they are on standby right now for our start date, which we are trying to work on once we get the land," Bevington said, adding that her focus is currently on working toward getting a signed development agreement following which she can give more details.

After Bevington recently presented via Zoom the exterior renderings of her proposed building, Coun. Kurt Gumushel questioned if the property could use two separate driveways for entry and exit points as there's only one proposed for the property. Bevington said her team decided to have a single two-way driveway to the parking lot, functioning both as the entrance and exit, in order to reduce the amount of traffic into the property and also for vehicles not to use it as a drive-through point.

Coun. Marc Blanchard requested a view of the interior building designs, but Bevington said her design team is working on them and she'll bring them to council as soon as they are ready. No timeline has been set for that.

Saint Andrews town clerk Paul Nopper said the project has completed the first readings and public hearings for both a municipal plan amendment and rezoning, and town council has now given staff the direction to proceed toward the second readings.

The second readings can be scheduled whenever the council decides to bring the project forward, Nopper said. Meanwhile, town staff are working with the developer towards obtaining the interior designs and forming a development agreement, which are both necessary for the project to pass the third readings.

Bevington said changes suggested by town council to the project can be made during the development agreement process.

"We are excited to being one step closer to getting the shovels in the ground," she said.

Rhythm Rathi, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Telegraph-Journal