City proposes 22 new lots

Whitehorse is proposing lot development at six Porter Creek locations. These properties include 22 existing, unserviced lots that may be subdivided…

Whitehorse is proposing lot development at six Porter Creek locations.

These properties include 22 existing, unserviced lots that may be subdivided and reconfigured to create between 36 and 51 housing units.

This is a far cry from the 125 single-family serviced lots that the Yukon Real Estate Association, Whitehorse Chamber of Commerce and other groups insist the city needs each year.

“In the end, the goal is to try to reduce sprawl. We’re looking for smaller footprints and we’re looking for more efficiency in our buildings,” said Mayor Bev Buckway.

“So it perhaps does not meet the request from the Chamber of Commerce for all single-family homes, however, we are meeting our goals.”

One city-owned lot at the end of 13th Avenue has access to sewer and water, but the larger portions of land would need to be serviced.

The task of servicing and subdividing the lots will be left to the private sector.

“It will be their design, their cost to extend the services and it would be the private sector putting forward the lots,” said planner Mike Gau.

“This is one opportunity to see if the private industry can do it faster and cheaper than the city.”

Adding new building lots in an existing neighbourhood is consistent with the city’s sustainability goals, continued Gau.

“It’s making use of existing municipal roads and services, and would reduce the need for development on the edge of the city.”

The proposal is not a reaction to the delegation that appeared before council on May 20 requesting more single-family lots, said city manager Dennis Shewfelt.

“This announcement today has been in the works for a number of months,” he said.

“And it’s only now that we have all the information necessary to bring this forward at this time.”

A public meeting will be held Thursday from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the Porter Creek Secondary School cafeteria.

The deadline for public input is June 25.

A report will be compiled and presented to council on July 7.

Council will decide whether the properties should be put to market the following week.

It will then be up to the Yukon government to make the lots that it owns available for sale.