Crews are busy finishing the Lakeside Village development off Six Mile Road in View Royal. The site will feature 15

HOMEFINDER: Commercial development in View Royal to make area more self-sustainable

New development encourages a sense of community near Thetis Lake

The new Lakeside Village development in View Royal has been catching the attention of passing motorists and pedestrians. In fact, that entire area of Six Mile Road near Thetis Lake has been drawing some attention.

“It’s great to see it coming along,” said View Royal Mayor David Screech. “It’s a pretty good spot.”

The project, by X.W. Sunrise Developments Ltd., at 430 Six Mile Rd., features sloped property with rock outcroppings bordering Garry oak and native wildflower ecosystems, and is steps away from Thetis Lake Park. According to their website, the area include four buildings that will surround a large landscaped courtyard. It will feature 15,000 square feet of commercial-retail zoned space as well as an outdoor play area for children, performance area for musical entertainment and lots of parking.

The development has used sustainable building practices to help conserve energy and minimize the project’s overall environmental impact. The naturally landscaped areas around the buildings will be irrigated by a storm water runoff collection system.

Developed to encourage a sense of community, the heart of the build is the centre courtyard, designed to be a gathering place. The site also plans to tie into the surrounding trail systems to better connect it to the area.

Screech said the overall plan for the area has always included a commercial development; “the residential just got built first.”

While he predicted the opening is still several weeks away, Screech said Urban Ground Market and a frozen yogurt shop have been confirmed as tenants. He said they were also hoping to get a restaurant in there as well.

While the intended plan for the development was to help make the residential area surrounding it more self-sufficient, he said Thetis Lake users will also benefit from the facilities, as there isn’t much else in that area. He thought the idea of frozen yogurt being so close to the lake during the summer months sounded pretty good.

“This will be one of the last pieces of the puzzle,” Screech said, noting the area is pretty much built out but still needs some of the commercial amenities that fit in View Royal’s Official Community Plan. He said the OCP encourages walkability and developments such as this one, which help residents shop locally without having to get into their cars. He said the OCP also encourages builders and developers to utilize sustainable building practices.

But for those that don’t live in neighbouring homes, he did note that the area, along with the rest of View Royal, is easily accessible by major transportation linkages making it a great stop for passing motorists.

In fact, location is one of the factors that Screech said makes View Royal so great. “It’s very easy to access,” he said. “We have a wonderful urban community.”

While he may have a slight bias, Screech said View Royal is “the best place to call home.”

katie@goldstreamgazette.com

Q: What are some of the benefits to living in a self-sufficient area?

There are many factors to consider when buying a home. But besides the physical structure itself, and all that goes along with it, there are external factors to think about.

With the Greater Victoria housing market moving quickly, especially in areas of the West Shore, buyers need to be ready to pounce on houses listed in those desirable neighbourhoods.

In addition to the certain charm many high-demand neighbourhoods provide, many potential buyers are looking at neighbourhoods based on their self-sustainability. This means that neighbourhoods, and their surrounding communities, provide residents with job opportunities as well as meeting all of their recreational, shopping and social needs.

With all of these amenities in close proximity to one’s home, residents don’t need to travel out of the area and often don’t even need to get into their cars to run errands or go to a movie. This can create a healthier home environment, provide a positive return on investment (in terms of future sale-ability) and can have a positive impact on the environment.

For those who have ever been stuck in the Colwood Crawl, the opportunity to spare oneself some time behind the wheel is worth its weight in gold. Not to mention, saving money on gas.

This self-sufficient concept is being embraced by many West Shore municipal councils and has been encouraged in a number of Official Community Plans.

As well, real estate listings usually provide a walkability score to help inform potential buyers about some of the features in the surrounding area.

GREATER VICTORIA MARKET UPDATE » MONTH TO DATE NOV. 9/15   COURTESY VICTORIA REAL ESTATE BOARD

» 145 / 465 — NET UNCONDITIONAL SALES / TOTAL, NOVEMBER 2014

» 238 / 682 –NEW LISTINGS / TOTAL, NOVEMBER 2014

» 3,060 / 3,631 — ACTIVE RESIDENTIAL LISTINGS / TOTAL, NOVEMBER 2014

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