Legislative Precinct Plan
January 6, 2014
The Legislative Precinct is the name given to Provincially-owned land surrounding the Parliament Buildings and their grounds.The Legislative Precinct Plan was adopted in 1994 as part of the Victoria Accord initiative, which saw the Province and City working together to establish a vision and plan for development of these Provincial lands in the City of Victoria. The Legislative Precinct Plan was prepared by the Province working with the City, in consultation with the James Bay neighbourhood.
The plan detailed proposals for Provincial offices (up to 48,000 m2) affordable housing (300 dwellings) and community amenities (e.g. daycare, branch library) on lands owned by the Province adjacent to the Legislature. The plan was sensitive to its location adjacent to the Legislature and the James Bay neighbourhood.
Along with adoption of the plan, zoning regulations, development permit area designation, design guidelines and a master development agreement were adopted to guide implementation of the plan.
The plan resulted in the development of one affordable housing project (Kew Court) and an Abbeyfield senior's home in a relocated heritage house. Other major elements of the plan such as the office space and more affordable housing were not constructed.
The master development agreement outlining Provincial commitments in implementing the plan (e.g. comprehensive site servicing plans, transportation demand management plans) was to expire on June 3, 2006 but has been renewed twice. The current agreement expires on June 2, 2014.
The Province is now in the process of subdividing and selling most of its land in the Legislative Precinct. The Province is stating it is committed to being a major tenant by occupying 16,722 m2 of office space to be built by the successful purchaser of the land.
As a result of the sale and proposed subdivisions, changes to the Legislative Precinct Plan may be required with amendments to the current zoning and possibly the Official Community Plan. In addition, revisions to the master development agreement and design guidelines may also be required.
Any proposed amendments and revisions will require the approval of City Council with public consultation led by the Province with the James Bay Neighbourhood Association, the local owners and occupiers of nearby land as well as the broader community. City Council will be interested in the consultation process and will be formally involved at key points.
Amendments to the Official Community Plan and the Zoning Bylaw require a Community Association Land Use Committee (CALUC) Community Meeting as well as a Public Hearing before consideration by City Council of the proposed changes. Ultimately, City Council will make the final decision on a specific proposal or development plan and associated amenities.
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