Council could nix suite for senior

Council could nix suite for senior Last June, Dan Cable bought property at 57 Carpiquet Rd. He wants to build a new home for his family on the vacant land in Takhini North. He also wants to construct a garden suite for his mother, June.

Last June, Dan Cable bought property at 57 Carpiquet Rd. He wants to build a new home for his family on the vacant land in Takhini North. He also wants to construct a garden suite for his mother, June. June Cable, 77, is going blind. Last fall, she fell in her Riverdale duplex and broke her shoulderbone. She’s on a waiting list for seniors’ housing with Yukon Hospital Corporation.

Building the suite will be expensive, so Dan Cable has applied to have the zoning changed so he can also build a rental unit in his property. Current zoning regulations allow for one garden suite or living suite to be built on the property, not both.

He wants to rent out the unit to help pay for the costs of the garden suite. It will also add a much-needed rental property for Whitehorse, he said.

But Whitehorse city council could force him to rethink these plans.

On Monday, the city planning department recommended council vote to deny Cable’s request. Zoning changes like this are normally granted when there’s something unusual with the property, said Pete Ross, land development supervisor with the city. And residents were concerned increasing density would cause more traffic in the vicinity.

June Cable no longer drives. The Cables have one car. The property has space for three vehicles.

But there’s no guarantee about who will live in the suite once it is built, or who could live there later, said Ross. A new tenant “could have four cars,” he said.

There could be another possibility. City planners have put in an option that would allow city council to vote to require that the garden suite on the site be fully accessible.

But that will also be costly, said Dan Cable. Right now the suite is designed for someone who is going blind, not necessarily someone who uses a wheelchair. If he has to build a fully accessible unit, he’ll have to change things like the height of counters in the current design, he said.

He plans to return to city council on Monday to make his case.

(Meagan Gillmore)

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