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Micro-suites could be coming to downtown Kelowna

Artist's rendering of propose building.
Image Credit: Contributed
June 21, 2016 - 8:00 PM

KELOWNA - A residential high-rise once intended for use as student housing has morphed into a micro-suite condo project the likes of which downtown Kelowna has not seen before, city planning staff say.

“It’s a great location. From our perspective, this is an innovative product, where you can actually buy a condo near downtown for $130,000 or $140,000,” urban planning manager Terry Barton says. "If they can bring that product to market, it will be a great success story.”

Pre-sales have already begun on the the proposed five-storey mixed use building at 925 Leon Ave., which the developer has proposed contain 184 micro-suites and eight two-bedroom units plus two ground level commercial retail units fronting on Ethel Street and Highway 97.

The micro-suites will be just 350 square feet but are close to just about everything, Barton says.

Planning staff are recommending Kelowna councillors agree to the seven variances developer Boardwalk Housing Corp. is requesting including shortening most of the building's setbacks and to increase the site coverage from 50 per cent to 84 per cent. Zoning for the site is already in place.

Barton says the number of variances isn’t unusual for a large residential building he described as 'sophisticated'.

Council is giving final consideration of the development permit and variance application at a public hearing, 6 p.m. Tuesday, June 28, in Kelowna council chambers.

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