Council turns down colour scheme of proposed apartments
Delta council is supportive of a new 58-unit apartment development on 12th Avenue in Tsawwassen except for one major impediment.
They don’t like the colours.
Coun. Ian Paton raised an objection to the colour scheme of the building, citing comments made by some people at the public hearing.
“If we could give them some sort of earth tones, some sort of West Coast look with more of a Whistler or a Sun peaks look with more darks, browns, wood tones,” he said.
The building colour scheme is currently cement board siding in charcoal and blue colours with light beige brick accents. Composite panels in green will also be used as accent materials.
Paton led a motion to have staff work with the applicant to bring back a more suitable colour scheme for third reading.
“It’s not Whistler, it’s Tsawwassen,” said Coun. Robert Campbell as he spoke against the motion. “I don’t believe in legislating taste into our bylaws. We can deal with design guidelines and other things as such, like we have in North Delta, but we bring those out when the process is started. Not at third reading.”
Campbell added he doesn’t think it’s the job of council to tell people what colour they can paint their building.
“I hate using the term slippery slope, but what are we getting ourselves into here,” said Coun. Bruce McDonald, adding there are design guidelines for form and character but taste and presentation is a personal preference. “Who’s going to say what shade of green is OK? Is moss green OK and lighter green not?”
Mayor Lois Jackson supported the motion, saying previous councils have improved the appearance of buildings in Delta through a similar process.
“If it was pink and purple would you change your mind,” she said. “We do have to reflect what we think is going to be something that’s going to stand the test of time through our design-making.”
Jackson said one woman at the public hearing told council she wanted to move to Tsawwassen but didn’t like the colour scheme. She brought some photos of buildings in Surrey to show council what she prefers.
The motion passed 4-3 with Couns. McDonald, Campbell, and Sylvia Bishop voting against.
Third reading was postponed until the March 11 council meeting, during which time staff will work with the applicant on the motion.
The architect for the project, Peter Dandyk, said Tuesday that they will respond with an alternative colour scheme.
“But there was an implication that the developer, and us as designers, hadn’t been listening either to the community or the direction we’ve been receiving,” he said. “That was definitely not the case and in fact the scheme that is in front of them for third reading has been refined and developed quite considerably from the original scheme that we approached on.”
Dandyk said there’s a planning commission and a design panel that has vetted and reviewed the design and they have responded each time.
The development, called BRIO, would be located on the southeast corner of 12th Ave. and 54A St. and is currently occupied by a commercial plaza, the former site of the Harris Nursery.
Two petitions have been delivered to Delta council, a 166-signature petition in support from nearby residents, and a 43-signature petition opposed.
If approved, the development would provide $93,000 in annual property tax revenue for Delta, though that would be offset by a loss of $21,000 from the existing commercial revenue.