A planned two-phase development along McGill Road could further densify the Thompson Rivers University precinct and make it more walkable.
This past week, Kamloops council sent to a public hearing a proposal for a six-storey building at 1021 McGill Rd., which is at the southeast corner of McGill Road and Hillside Drive, across from the university’s main entrance.
City development director Marvin Kwiatkowski said as part of the development, a walkway would be included in front of the corridor.
“As part of this development, we would look at additional right-of-way for a sidewalk… we would look at a three-metre sidewalk, tree-lined, so it would look very nice and be attractive to pedestrians who use that corridor. It’s getting more and more busy with development and with TRU growth,” he said.
In addition, wide entranceways to the site will be “cleaned up,” Kwiatkowski said, noting it will improve traffic and safety.
The property requires rezoning from industrial park to general commercial to pave way for two mixed-use buildings. It currently houses a strip mall. Also sought are site-specific amendments to allow for an education/training facility, neighbourhood pub and printing services.
The first phase plans for a six-storey building on the east side of the property, where the Sushi Mura restaurant currently sits, with about 6,500 square feet of commercial space on the ground level and 49 residential units on the top floors. The second phase is expected to include 13,000 square feet of commercial space and 63 residential units.
A city report also notes the property previously housed an unlicensed cannabis store, which voluntarily shut down prior to recreational pot legalization. Earlier this year, however, the city received a provincial referral for an application for a legal store on the property.
“This retail cannabis application is currently on hold pending the outcome of this rezoning application,” the city report notes.
Council voted 8-0 to send the project to a public hearing. Coun. Arjun Singh declared a conflict of interest, due to his family owning rentals in the same area of town.