The city will hold a public hearing for a rezoning application on light industrial land at the corner of McGill Road and University Drive, which could pave way for Thompson Rivers University to expand its footprint.
The property, located at 1120 McGill Rd., contains a warehouse and was previously home to Bandstra Transportation Systems and Canadian Freightways.
Kwiatkowski said the university purchased the property two years ago with plans to build mixed-use commercial residential and create an additional entrance to campus.
The property will act as student parking prior to its planned redevelopment.
“Speaking of vision, this is another positive for the city and TRU in looking at expanding,” City of Kamloops development director Marvin Kwiatkowski said.
“TRU has been fairly, obviously a big impact on the community.”
Council unanimously voted to send the application to a public hearing.
Coun. Sadie Hunter, an employee of TRU, abstained.
While in favour, Coun. Mike O’Reilly said he is a “little bit concerned” about the erosion of industrial land in Kamloops and asked whether TRU’s plan is to move further along McGill Road.
Kwiatkowski said the city previously refused rezoning industrial. However, council recently approved sending millions of dollars worth of infrastructure upgrades to the development cost charge committee for review, which could result in the city opening up industrial land in the Southwest sector.
Kwiatkowski said the area is changing.
“There’s a transition happening. It’s all important we agree,” he said.
“That’s a big concern is lack of industrial land. I think we have a plan in place, we’ve got to move that forward. Would TRU’s vision be to expand? Potentially, yes.”
TRU’s vice-president of administration and finance Matt Milovick told KTW the property is a “prime spot,” but there are no immediate plans for its development.
Along with adding more parking stalls, the university intends to store equipment from the Adventure Studies program in the warehouse.
Though the property will fill the current need for parking on campus, it was purchased to become a “future academic building site” as part of its development, Milovick told the TRU board of governors at a meeting last month.