Plans unveiled for previous Howard Johnson website in Nanaimo

Minnie V. Muir

A mixed-use riverfront redevelopment proposed on the previous Howard Johnson resort lands in Nanaimo would convey 698 housing units, a lodge and a waterfront park to the northwestern edge of downtown.

The Millstone Riverfront Task, with predominantly mid-increase household buildings on 7.2 acres, involves rezoning approval in advance of proceeding.

Mayor Leonard Krog is thrilled about the site staying redeveloped “because it is such an crucial piece of land in the metropolis.”

“We really do not have pretty many huge parcels in the downtown main, and particularly right following to the river,” Krog mentioned Thursday.

He would not remark on the details of the proposal at this phase, but said citizens will have a lot of curiosity in it.

The scale of the proposal demonstrates increasing confidence in Nanaimo and its foreseeable future, Krog said.

A numbered company owned by Victoria’s Martin household is building the web page. Brian Martin, who died in 2016, owned each the Nanaimo Howard Johnson and the Royal Oak Howard Johnston in Saanich, and his family members is powering the improvement proposal.

In drop 2018, the Nanaimo Howard Johnson closed just after 56 decades in company.

The land has been considered for redevelopment in the past. A 2015 proposal, which did not go in advance, would have seen an $80-million hotel with a 5,000-seat multiplex to serve as a foundation for a Western Hockey League staff. In the previous couple a long time, the large-profile property has been mostly utilised by the motor inn, as a bus terminal and for parking.

The east side of the web site is bounded by the Terminal Avenue (the Island Highway) overpass and an intersection with Comox Road.

If accepted, the venture would see 698 new houses, like rental models and townhouses, a 120-room lodge, 6,000 square toes of commercial/retail, underground parking and a linear park at the Millstone River, which would substitute overgrown blackberry bushes.

Most buildings are proposed to vary from two to 6 storeys. The tallest would be a 16-storey household tower on the east facet of the web page up coming to the hotel.

Internal streets will be developed by the developer, along with a roundabout with central mini-park and a plaza on the north-east conclusion facing the river.

“The vision of the proposed Millstone River Challenge is that of a all-natural extension of Nanaimo’s 19th-century city structure, completing the northern edge of downtown with necessary housing when connecting far more of the city with a extensive neglected riverfront,” the submission to the town stated.

Architect Franc D’Ambrosio, of D’Ambrosio architecture + urbanism, reported the website is the crossover to the downtown, and the venture would provide continuity to the area.

It would consider the metropolis to the river and connection up with present pathways and cycling routes, he reported. Household models will be in going for walks distance to companies.

“This brings significant inhabitants to downtown,” D’Ambrosio reported.

Inhabitants would be equipped to drive to the new riverfront park.

New buildings at the corner would be created at road level, generating a landmark web site, D’Ambrosio stated.

A little fewer than a person-quarter of the property has been offered to Ironclad Developments Inc. of Manitoba, which needs to create a big household creating on the west facet of the web site.

Nanaimo’s financial system is looking at the results of a building growth. New inns, condominium buildings and rental initiatives, along with a variety of housing, are all going up.

The expense to build the Millstone Riverfront task will be “easily $200 million-plus by the time the dust settles. It is major,” D’Ambrosio reported.

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