City news, briefly

Some of the decisions from the March 9 Whitehorse council meeting

Landfill contracts awarded

Two five-year contracts to run the Whitehorse landfill will go to local firms.

At Whitehorse city council’s March 9 meeting, members voted to award the next five-year gate-keeping contract to Gray Management Services with General Waste Management being awarded the contract for transfer station operations.

Gray Management came in with the lowest of three bids submitted on the gate-keeping contract at $718,326 for the total five years. Broken down, the yearly amounts would be $129,999 for 2020 to 2021, followed by $136,498; $143,323; $150,490; and $158,014 in each of the following years.

While the amount is higher than the city had anticipated, a review of land operations is set to happen later this year with changes expected to tipping fees in 2021.

On the transfer station operations contract, General Waste Management put forward the only compliant bid.

It bid $933,253 over the five-year period beginning with $175,782 in the 2020/2021 year, followed by $181,055; $186,487; $192,082 and $197,844 in subsequent years.

As with the gate-keeping contract, the bid came in higher than expected.

City of Whitehorse buys new packers

The City of Whitehorse will have two new compost/waste packers in the coming months.

Whitehorse city council approved the contract award for the supply of the trucks to Superior Truck Equipment at its March 9 meeting.

The city’s 2018 contract with Superior included an option and pricing for two more units in 2020, at $640,828 for the purchase.

“The packers previously delivered by Superior Truck have proven to be successful from many aspects of operations and maintenance, with little difficulty,” Richard Graham, the city’s operations manager, stated in a previous report to council.

“Superior Truck has the expertise, training, equipment and resources to complete the delivery of the 2020 units under the terms and conditions as specified under the city’s option for delivery of units in 2020. The pricing provided for the 2020 units results in an increase of approximately 1.79 per cent over 2017 pricing is significantly less than Yukon CPI.”

Incentive approved for new rental housing

A major incentive has been approved for the developer of a planned 87-unit rental housing development in Whistle Bend.

Members of Whitehorse city council voted March 9 in favour of approving the incentive agreement for the project.

Sammy Hachem is planning to build three apartment buildings that would feature one and two-bedroom units at 11 Tarahne Way.

The city’s incentive policy was recently updated and is designed to encourage smaller, denser housing in certain parts of the city as well as increase the number of rental and supportive housing units, it was noted in an earlier report to council.

Under the incentive agreement, Hachem would be eligible for a reduction in development cost charges and a 10-year incentive to a maximum of $500,000. The annual grant is only available when property taxes are paid in full.

Coun. Laura Cabott praised the project, highlighting the significant need for rental units in town. She also pointed out it is the first project to be approved for a major incentive since the policy was updated.

Coun. Steve Roddick recalled that it was less than two years ago before being elected that he appeared before council opposed to a rezoning application for the property to allow single-family and duplex homes. Rather, he wanted the zoning maintained for denser development, a move he argued will help the viability of businesses that set up shop in the neighbourhood.

“I’m very excited to see this project,” he said of the apartments planned for the site, noting the 87 units is about three times the number of units than would have been permitted had the rezoning been approved.

College Drive gets a new name

College Drive is no more.

Instead those heading up to Yukon College (soon to be Yukon University), the Yukon Arts Centre or Yukon Archives will turn off Range Road onto University Drive.

Whitehorse city council passed third reading of the bylaw to rename the road at its March 9 meeting, two months ahead of the official change for the school to become a university.

The school requested the change in light of it becoming a university.

While the roadway to the school has been changed in name, the private roadway to a seniors residence off the school’s main parking lot will remain as College Drive so that residents there won’t have to change their mailing address.

As well, the ring road around the campus will be given a Southern Touchtone name at a later date.

With the main road renamed, a new sign will be installed at the Range Road intersection.

Whitehorse city council