Creating a Vibrant Downtown Squamish

Final Update (May 2018)

The following zoning amendment bylaws were adopted on March 20, 2018:

District of Squamish Zoning Bylaw No. 2200, 2011, Amendment Bylaw (Setbacks and Cash-in-lieu Parking) No. 2576, 2017

District of Squamish Zoning Bylaw No. 2200, 2011, Amendment Bylaw (Employment Space) No. 2577, 2017

District of Squamish Zoning Bylaw No. 2200, 2011, Amendment Bylaw (FAR on Cleveland, Upper storeys setback on Cleveland and Frontages on Cleveland) No. 2578, 2017

A Public Hearing was held on February 13 to hear from the community on the proposed Downtown Zoning Changes Bylaws. 

Second Reading of the Downtown Zoning Changes Bylaws took place January 23 - Read the report to Council.


Proposed Downtown Zoning Changes

Three proposed changes are the product of the Downtown Zoning Changes project:

  1. Setbacks and Cash-in-lieu Parking
  2. Employment Space
  3. Floor Area Ratio on Cleveland, Upper storeys setback on Cleveland and Frontage on Cleveland

1. Proposed Amendment Bylaw (Setbacks and Cash-in-lieu Parking) No. 2576, 2017: View the bylaw

Third Avenue and Pemberton Avenue Setbacks (Map below)

  • Require a minimum building setback of 2.5m along any property line fronting Third Avenue from Bailey Street to Westminster Street and reduce the laneway setback by an equal amount to ensure adequate streetscape space for wider sidewalks, trees, parking and separated bike lanes. 
  • Require a minimum building setback of 1.5m along any property fronting Pemberton Avenue from the active CN Rail line to Third Avenue and reduce the laneway setback by an equal amount to ensure adequate streetscape space for wider sidewalks, trees, turning aisles, parking and separated bike lanes. 

Cash in lieu setbacks downtown 2576

Cash-in-lieu Parking:

  • Limit all Downtown commercial parking cash-in-lieu buyouts to a 4 space maximum, after which parking cash-in-lieu would operate on a one to one ratio (receive 1 additional cash-in-lieu space for every 1 on-site space provided) to support employment space development.
  • Allow unlimited cash-in-lieu buyouts for properties fronting Cleveland Avenue between Pemberton Avenue and Main Street having a lot width of 16 m or less, or for developments that contain 100% employment space as long as accessibility stall requirements are met, to support employment space development. 

**The cash-in-lieu regulations only apply to commercial parking stalls, not residential. If a developer decides to use the cash-in-lieu option, they can choose to pay for commercial parking stalls instead of providing these stalls on site. One stall currently costs $15,000. Cash-in-lieu funds go into a District reserve to fund the creation of new centralized parking stalls (such as a parkade) that would ultimately be designed to serve the Downtown commercial area.  

2. Proposed Amendment Bylaw (Employment Space) No. 2577, 2017: View the bylaw

  • Require a minimum of 20% of a building’s gross floor area (GFA) be used as employment space to increase the amount of employment space downtown.

 3. Amendment Bylaw (FAR on Cleveland, Upper storeys setback on Cleveland and Frontage on Cleveland) No. 2578, 2017: View the bylaw

Floor Area Ratio (FAR) on Cleveland:

  • The maximum density for properties with frontage on Cleveland Avenue south of Pemberton Avenue and north of Main Street shall depend on the percentage amount (%) of employment space provided, to maintain a smaller building scale while encouraging employment space development (no change to height), as follows:

Lot Size

Lot Dimensions

Maximum Floor Area Ratio

Employment Space %

Small

Parcels less than 560m2

2.00
2.25
3.00

25%
30%
100%

Medium

Parcels between 560 and 1860m2

1.75
2.00
2.75

25%
30% 
100%

Large

Parcels greater than 1860m2

1.50
1.75
2.50

25%
30% 
100%

Frontage on Cleveland Avenue:

  • Properties with frontage on Cleveland Avenue south of Pemberton Avenue and north of Main Street shall have a maximum width of 16m for each individual commercial unit located at the street level to maintain small scale commercial along Cleveland Avenue.   

Upper Storeys Setback on Cleveland Avenue:

  • Properties with frontage on Cleveland Avenue south of Pemberton Avenue and north of Main Street, shall have no portion of a building project past a line angled from the sidewalk to maintain a smaller building scale and reduce the impact of building shadows along Cleveland. 

 Example diagram of Upper Storeys Setback:

diagram of upper storeys setbacks 2576

 


View the Downtown Zoning Changes Project background information.  


Stay up to date as we work towards implementing our Downtown and Active Transportation visions through zoning changes and other initiatives, by following this page. 

 

logos for 05042017 event

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Comments

  • Darlene Anderson Nov 26, 2017

    I am trying to find development proposals on this website and I have had NO luck. Impossible to navigate this site. I walked past a sign for 2017-72 on 38275 Third avenue for a new seniors housing project. I cannot find anything about this sign. I clearly don't have the correct website. I was curious to learn what the significant off street parking and bicycle variances to this project were - and wanted to comment on it. IF someone could get back to me about this project I would appreciate it.

    • Communications Nov 27, 2017

      Hi Darlene. Thanks for your comment. This project is now active on the Development Showcase (https://squamish.ca/showcase). In checking with the Planning Department, it sounds like the developer’s sign went up a couple of days before the project information went live. We apologize for any confusion this caused. Thanks.

  • Matthew McClenaghan May 02, 2017

    Downtown Squamish needs more density and people to create a vibrant pedestrian friendly community that can support local shops. At its current state the shops and streets look tired. New buildings and more people will bring the area back to life.

    • Darlene Anderson Nov 26, 2017

      Matthew . Remember this is downtown Squamish. As a resident of downtown Squamish I have no desire for the population density of Squamish to increase drastically - in your attempt to revitalize downtown Squamish. So revitalize all you want but not at the expense of a huge increase in population density. That is already happening - so how much do you want this to happen before it is no longer Squamish - but something else. You have that Newport development happening, increased density at that horrid Eaglewind development (aka - the rabbit warren). People don't move to Squamish for a highly dense downtown. Revitalization can occur in other ways.
      AND if you are going to have more traffic in Squamish you need a proper foot traffic way and a proper bike traffic way - the bike traffic way - is currently non existent in Squamish. Currently we are supposed to share Cleveland with cars . How delightful and UNSAFE feeling. I have to worry about being backed up into on Second between Pemberton and Victoria and the "buffer" lane along Second in front of district hall and the library is too narrow. I"m not sure you used proper code to build that. Take a look - any big truck or car with a large door swings into the BIKE lane beyond the "buffer zone". I have been doored and injured from it. I did not like it. (either time)

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