A major development is being proposed for an area at the heart of Powell River called Benchlands. The proposed development stretches from the Cranberry Lake neighbourhood all the way to the edge of Millennium Park; specifically 250 acres of land.
The proposal aims to “meet many of the community objectives, related to housing, parks and open space,” according to Suzie Lunn, senior planner, MODUS Planning and Engagement.
Community dialogue, which is phase-two of the proposal and project, will take place April 25, from 4 pm to 8 pm, at Powell River Recreation Complex, in the Cedar room. Those interested can drop in or preregister.
The planning company is working with the real estate company Couverdon (based in Nanaimo), on public engagement and planning for the project. Phase-three is when [MODUS and Couverdon] would create a draft of the plan; in phase-four, City of Powell River would be involved in the rezoning process (if approved). The implementation would be over a 26-year period (2024-2050).
According to the Powell River Sustainable Official Community Plan (2014), it identifies the Benchlands as a site for “urban residential low density, and employment centre, with parks, schools and green space.”
The area is governed by the city’s sustainable community plan and zoning bylaws. Currently zoning in the area is considered rural, and would allow for low density residential, natural resource and agricultural uses. The possible rezoning would allow for more housing densification.
“The purpose of the open house is to host an in-person information sharing event,” said Lunn, via email. “We want to share our early understanding and approach to site planning, as well as receive feedback from the community.”
The area is enticing, because it covers a lot of space, including the edges of Joyce and Manson avenues, Townsite, Westview and Cranberry. To find out more, go to powellriverbenchlands.com, which has information on the project