Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Parking planned for land along George Hills Way in area adjacent to Cow Bay

An area of land along George Hills Way just east of the Prince Rupert
Yacht Club is to be developed into a temporary parking lot

The prospect of selling some land in the Cow Bay Area for development, has the City of Prince Rupert looking to move forward on the creation of some temporary parking to make up for what will be lost.

In a statement released today, the City outlines how in partnership with Prince Rupert Legacy Inc., an area of city owned land and recently cleared along George Hills Way, will soon be turned into a gravel Parking lot.

That while an area currently being used for parking will be up for disposition, with the land in Question in the Cow Bay area currently zoned for mixed use Development.

That disposition is to be put forward later this week, so far there are no details noted towards what is planned for the area to be developed, though an area of the map below does make note of a Commercial Custom Boat Workshop area and Pedestrian connection through the parking lot in that area.

A New Temporary Parking lot is part of some larger ambitions for the City
when it comes to Cow Bay Area development 

“Cow Bay is one of Prince Rupert’s most sought-after commercial areas. As we begin to get more interest in development, we know we need to have adequate parking in the surrounding area so that it’s accessible for the public. To offset the potential loss of parking in one of our existing lots, we’re looking to the Legacy lot to more than make up the difference in the potential loss of spaces.” -- Rob Buchan, City Manager

From their notes the City outlines that Parking in Cow Bay has long been identified as an issue, with higher congestion often found in the area, particularly on sunny days. 

As part of the overall review of parking, City Staff looked at how existing parking serves the area and opportunities to rearrange parking to promote planning principles of smart and walkable neighbourhoods, as well as accommodate growth in Cow Bay. 

The parking lot along George Hills Way would be less than a 1-minute walk away from businesses in lower Cow Bay, and would remain until new development on the Legacy-owned lot occurs and brings new, paved parking. 

Over the longer term, there are also plans to install angled parking along the 3rd Ave E extension, which is planned to follow through behind Rona. 

 In the remaining cleared area owned by Legacy, the Official Community Plan also prioritizes mixed residential and commercial development, so attracting those forms of development is also an ongoing priority.

As noted above, the work on the George Hills Way parking lot is the first step of the wider plan for the area which will eventually see Third Avenue West extended to just past where the new temporary lot is to be built. 

Though no timeline is noted towards that work in today's announcement.

Today's information release, which you can review here, also notes of some of City Council's work towards the city's parking strategy for the months and years ahead.

The city notes that residents can learn more about their Parking Strategies and actions from their Rupert Talks Portal here.

More notes on themes related to Cow Bay can be explored here.

Items of interest coming out of City Council Discussions are available for review here.

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