Five residents spoke out against a rezoning request for 1306 Centennial St. at a city council meeting in Whitehorse on Oct. 15. The lot is currently zoned as a residential single-detached zone but is requested to be changed to a multi-residential zone to accommodate nine units.(Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

Residents resist new apartment building on Centennial Street

At a public hearing residents claimed the development would mean less privacy, block sunlight and parking issues

A proposed nine-unit apartment building on Centennial Street does not fit in with the character of the neighbourhood and has the potential to block out sunlight and views and take away the privacy of neighbouring residents, Whitehorse city council heard at its Oct. 15 meeting.

A public hearing on the proposed rezoning of 1306 Centennial Street in Porter Creek was held with five residents speaking out against changing it from its current residential single-detached zone to a multi-residential zone.

The multi-residential zone would allow for a development of up to 11 units — though the developer is proposing nine — with a maximum height limit growing from 10 to 15 meters, which could be three storeys.

Many argued the height is too much for the area and while there are other multi-residential homes nearby, they have been planned to fit into the area. The six-plex at the corner of 12th Avenue and Centennial Street, for example, is designed to fit with other homes in the neighbourhood. Even with those efforts there are issues with a number of people parking in front of the homes along Centennial.

Former city councillor (and former territorial MLA) Doug Graham, a resident of the area, argued if anyone thinks the required 10 parking spaces for the apartment unit will be adequate, they’re living in a “dream world”.

Like many who spoke, Graham also took issue with the nearly 10-m garage that’s already being built on the property, referring to it as a “large monstrosity”.

Developer Scott Darling said the garage has all the permits in place and meets the current residential single-detached zoning requirements.

“We’re trying to play by the rules,” he said, adding that when he and his numbered company began working on the development this summer they looked at what could be done within the rules that are in place while waiting for the zoning change to come forward to council.

Even if the proposed project does not go ahead, Darling said a development will happen on the site though the number of units may be reduced to meet the zoning requirements for a residential single detached zone instead.

He explained the garage would also feature a utility room and elevator maintenance area with space on the second floor for Darling to work.

He wants the building to be part of and welcomed by the community and highlighted the need for housing overall throughout Whitehorse.

Other delegates like Cam Kos argued there are other areas such as Whistle Bend where multi-residential lots are already available without having to rezone.

Darling pointed to a number of multi-residential developments along Centennial beyond the six-plex and said work has been done to alter the designs to fit with city plans and proposals.

Along with the concerns about the height of the building and fitting into the character of the neighbourhood, council also heard concerns about vehicles parking in the back of the property and the possibility of gas and oil leaking onto neighbouring properties and noise that could come from that parking area.

In addition to the five delegates speaking out against the rezoning, council also learned the city had received two written submissions also opposing it.

After the meeting, Mayor Dan Curtis said balancing the need for housing in the community with the concerns of residents who want the character of the neighborhood to remain is a challenge.

Concerns about the height limit are “something we can talk about” as the city moves forward in the zoning process, the mayor said.

That process will see a staff report on the public hearing come forward Oct. 22. It’s expected council will then vote on second and third reading Oct. 28.

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

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Dr. Brendan Hanley, Yukon’s chief medical officer of health, speaks to media at a press conference about COVID-19 in Whitehorse on March 30. The Yukon government announced three new cases of COVID-19 in Watson Lake on Oct. 23. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Three new COVID-19 cases identified in Watson Lake

The Yukon government has identified three locations in town where public exposure may have occurred

The Whitehorse sewage lagoons photographed in 2011. With new regulations for wastewater anticipated to be introduced by the federal government within the next decade, the City of Whitehorse may soon be doing some prep work by looking at exactly what type of pollutants are making their way into the city’s wastewater. (Ian Stewart/Yukon News file)
Pondering pollutants

City could spend $70,000 looking at what contaminents are in waste water

Most of Whitehorse Individual Learning Centre’s class of 2020 graduates. The former students were welcomed back and honoured by staff at the school on Oct. 14 with a personalized grad ceremony for each graduate. (Submitted)
Individual Learning Centre grads honoured

Members of the Whitehorse Individual Learning Centre’s class of 2020 were welcomed… Continue reading

Asad Chishti, organizer of the rally to support the conservation of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, leads marchers through chants with a megaphone outside the Bank of Montreal in Whitehorse on Aug. 28. The BMO is the second Candian bank to announce it will not directly fund oil and gas projects in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Bank of Montreal second Canadian bank to join ANWR boycott

BMO joins RBC, the first to commit to the boycott

Premier Sandy Silver, left, and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Brendan Hanley speak during a COVID-19 update press conference in Whitehorse on July 29. Silver urged “kindness and patience” during the weekly COVID-19 update on Oct. 21, after RCMP said they are investigating an act of vandalism against American travellers in Haines Junction.
(Alistair Maitland Photography file)
COVID-19 update urges “kindness and patience” for travellers transiting through the territory

“We need to support each other through these challenging times”

asdf
COMMENTARY: Me and systemic racism

The view from a place of privilege

asdf
Today’s mailbox: Electricity and air travel

Letters to the editor published Oct. 23, 2020

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: Irony versus Climate

Lately it seems like Irony has taken over as Editor-in-Chief at media… Continue reading

Evan Lafreniere races downhill during the U Kon Echelon Halloweeny Cross-Country Race on Oct. 16. (Inara Barker/Submitted)
Costumed bike race marks end of season

The U Kon Echelon Bike Club hosted its final race of the… Continue reading

Smartphone showing various applications to social media services and Google. (Pixabay photo)
National media calling for level playing field with Google, Facebook

In Canada, Google and Facebook control 80 per cent of all online advertising revenues

Education Minister Tracy-Anne McPhee, right, before question period at the Yukon legislative assembly in Whitehorse on March 7, 2019. The Yukon government announced Oct. 19 it has increased the honoraria rates for school council members. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Honoraria increased for school council members

Members of school councils throughout the territory could soon receive an increased… Continue reading

Triple J’s Canna Space in Whitehorse on April 17, 2019, opens their first container of product. Two years after Canada legalized the sale of cannabis, Yukon leads the country in per capita legal sales. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Yukon leads Canadian cannabis sales two years after legalization

Private retailers still asking for changes that would allow online sales

A sign greets guests near the entrance of the Canada Games Centre in Whitehorse on June 11. The city announced Oct. 16 it was moving into the next part of its phased reopening plan with spectator seating areas open at a reduced capacity to allow for physical distancing. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
CGC reopening continues

Limited spectator seating now available

Most Read