At its May 10 meeting, Whitehorse city council approved the subdivision for the Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s business park planned in Marwell. (Submitted)

At its May 10 meeting, Whitehorse city council approved the subdivision for the Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s business park planned in Marwell. (Submitted)

KDFN business park subdivision approved

Will mean more commercial industrial land available in Whitehorse

Work on the ground for the second phase of a new business park in Marwell is anticipated to begin in 2022 after the reconstruction of Tlingit Street is finished this year.

At its May 10 meeting, Whitehorse city council approved the subdivision for the second phase of the Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s Hammerstone Business Park on Tlingit Street in Marwell.

The subdivision will create 11 lots in addition to five that were created in Phase 1. Eight of the commercial industrial lots to be developed will be 1,850 square metres with another set to be 1,790 square metres. The other properties being created from the subdivision will be in the form of an access and a larger area that will form the boundary for Phase 3.

A further 15 lots are planned in Phase 3, though as stated in a report to council: “It should be noted that Phase 3 as shown on the master plan is conceptual and subject to change, depending on demand for commercial/industrial lots.”

A large green space is planned for behind the development.

“I think it’s a win-win all the way around,” Coun. Laura Cabott said before voting in favour of the subdivision.

As she pointed out, the KDFN has been planning the business park for some time and it coincides with high demand in the city right now for commercial/industrial land.

The city’s 2020 commercial and industrial land study estimated approximately 87 hectares would be needed to meet the demand.

“Several potential land supply strategies are explored in the study, including industrial infill development of appropriately designated, but undeveloped land, such as KDFN’s lot 226 in Marwell,” a previous report to council states. “Approval of the proposed subdivision will assist in bringing forward commercial and industrial land, which is in demand.”

The strong demand had Cabott wondering about project timelines with Mike Gau, the city’s director of development services, replying that some lease agreements for space in the new business park are already signed and it’s anticipated work on the ground would begin after the rebuilding of Tlingit Street is complete.

With the road work happening through the 2021 construction season, it’s likely work on the development would begin in 2022, Gau said.

Coun. Samson Hartland said he too is pleased to see plans for the business park moving forward, noting the importance of working with other governments to get land to market.

While the first two phases of the project front Tlingit Street and will not require additional utility services, Phase 3 is expected to require roads and utilities to be developed.

That will require an agreement between the city and First Nation on servicing standards and ongoing maintenance when efforts for that phase begin.

Contact Stephanie Waddell at stephanie.waddell@yukon-news.com

Whitehorse city council

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