General · 27th May 2010
It has been several weeks since the last progress report on the Cove Village Plan. During that time
the consultants have been drawing and writing initial drafts and getting feedback from the Steering Committee. The work has followed from the principles set out in February, and from the design charrette (workshop), both of which have been covered in earlier DI articles and public meetings.
Who is the Cove Plan for?
Using 2006 census data, the average age on Quadra Island is over 50 years and that more than 20%
are over 60. There may be 200 senior's households that are candidates for different housing in the
immediate term, and many wish to stay on Quadra. Adding young families and individuals who are poorly housed and have modest incomes would increase that number substantially. This matches well with the results of the 2007 Quadra Housing Survey. Most housing on Quadra now is semi-rural, on acreage. It is expensive to purchase and labour intensive to keep. More housing options that are not available now, and that meet the needs of seniors and young people are essential to the future of Quadra. This is an existing need, and it is the focus of the plan.
From the 2008 Official Community Plan
“The community would like to create strong, walkable community centers in Quathiaski Cove... Forms of development should incorporate low, small scale, “residential style” building designs and the provision of internal pedestrian and cycle circulation patterns designed to tie into existing and/or future road and trail systems”.
From a 2007 vision statement by an ad-hoc working group on Seniors Housing:
'housing and care options for senior or disabled people and housing options for younger people ... in a multi-generational setting in The Cove village core area'.
What about landowners?
Right now landowners have very few options in the Cove. The zoning is either 1 acre residential or
commercial. Neither allow for the range of options that are needed to meet the existing demand for
different housing. The Cove Plan is a framework for the future, providing a coherent way for change
to occur, ensuring that goals are met and that the pieces fit together. In the Plan are proposed land
use designations and rezoning options that come with obligations to provide for the public interests:
trails and greenways, public greens and gathering places, a waterfront walk, etc. as well as more
varied and affordable housing options. It's all about the quality of the environment.
Proposed land use designations.
The proposed plan shows new land use designations radiating outward from the existing two village commercial cores (see attached diagram). QCM: The central cores, now commercial, would allow commercial and mixed use zonings such as apartments above shops as well as attached housing (townhouses) and live-work studios. It would also allow community service and recreation uses.
QCR: The next layer, within about 150 M (500 ft) of these centres, would be residential uses such as
garden cottages, townhouses and live-work studios. QPR: The next layer, more than 150m from the
commercial core would allow more widely spaced housing such as 15 M (50ft ) wide single family
lots, as well as the infill of the existing 1Ac lots with cottages. QWM is a special character designation for the waterfront belonging to Weston Foods. It is meant for public water access and low density commercial (shops and cafes etc.) with possible apartments above. The outer circle would remain unchanged- i.e 1 Acre and larger residential lots. All residential units are expected to have individual entrances- i.e. no apartment buildings.
What about the number of dwellings?
What we are proposing is that core areas might have up to about 6 dwellings per acre while
peripheral areas up to about 4 dwellings per acre maximum. Of course this is both a very long term
possibility, and also limited by the geography, parks, trails, gardens, greenways and wetland
contributions etc. So the actual density would usually be lower. As a comparison, the Seniors
Housing underway in the Cove will have 6 or 7 units on one acre.
What about form and character?
We have developed an outline guide for the character of buildings for various areas. It recommends things like sloped and gable roofs, exterior wood trims and details, gardens & greens adjacent to residences, covered walkways and shop windows for commercial, etc. This part is still being drafted, but is seen as an important way to guide overall village character.
What about seniors with care needs?
The steering committee identifies a strong need for supported living facilities in The Cove. So the
plan includes proposed locations for this. This facility will have different criteria, e.g. it can have a common entrance like an apartment building.
The future process.
The first draft of the plan and the drawings that go with it are under the scrutiny of the steering
committee and are being edited now. The drawings are "scenarios" of how the Cove might change over time once new land use designations are refined and approved. The full draft will be presented at an evening public meeting June 9th, and further public input received. The consultants, the committee and the Regional District Planners will then refine and edit until we have a version that is widely accepted. Then it goes to the Planners for refinement into the eventual amendments to the OCP.
How does it get built?
Once the plan is in place, then land owners may come forward with rezoning proposals that
conform with the plan. The rezoning process will have the usual public consultations, so Quadra
Islanders once again have their say. Then if rezoned, there will be development permits required for any multiple unit developments. This process also has public consultations, including the form and character of the buildings proposed, ground coverage etc. Naturally this whole process will take decades to produce significant changes in The Cove, and of course there have to beinterested
buyers and renters for any of this to happen.
Please mark your calendars for the June 9th public meeting- 7:00 to 9:00 at the Community
David Rousseau- 250 935-6878 infoarchemyconsulting.com
housing for all
Comment by Hazel Trego on 29th May 2010
I sit here in my town condo, studying the community plan and reflecting on the changing face of our island communities. While I've become a Zoomer (forget "senior"), and have moved to town for affordable housing, I am hoping the Quadra community will soon include the vibrant mix of ages that were there 25 years ago. I hope that once again low and middle income people of all ages can find affordable housing, and that the school will once again see increasing numbers. Perhaps the people of Cape Mudge village will also see a treaty signed; at this point Quadra is still officially theirs.
Comment by Debbie on 28th May 2010
Great ideas for all members of the island. Let's keep our young families and seniors in their community.