An offer is expected to be made on a city property included in a development planned for Commercial Drive and Venables Street.
The Kettle Society, a nonprofit that provides housing for people with mental-health challenges, and Boffo Properties have partnered to propose building 200 condo residences and 30 units of social housing at the site.
“I know that currently a lot of the plans that were discussed included that city portion of land, and if they wish to buy it, well… Make an offer, and we’ll see what the will of council is,” Vancouver councillor Kerry Jang told the Straight in a phone interview.
The plan, which includes a 12-storey building, involves four properties. One is owned by Kettle, and is flanked by two Boffo lots. The fourth property is owned by the city.
On July 28, council approved a new community plan for the Grandview-Woodland neighbourhood, which covers Commercial Drive.
With the exception of Adriane Carr and George Affleck, councillors rejected a staff recommendation in the plan to limit the Kettle and Boffo development to nine storeys.
According to the community plan, the development “could occur in a consolidated manner that incorporates several properties (and could possibly include the City owned land) or it could occur through a number of independent developments”.
Jang maintained that while the city supports the creation of 30 supportive-housing units for mentally ill people in the neighbourhood, the inclusion of its property in the development is “not set in stone”.
Last spring, the No Tower Coalition suggested an alternative in which the city would donate its land to Kettle. For its part, Kettle would sell its Venables Street property, estimated to be worth $2 million. With a capital contribution of the same amount from Kettle, the provincial and federal governments could step in to help in the construction of a six-storey building that would have social housing and homes at low market rents.