Steveston to become a Highrise Metropolis?

Steveston, British Columbia is a historic community named after Manoah Steves, who arrived with his family in 1877-1878 from Moncton, New Brunswick.  Steveston has its’ roots in the fishing community with many heritage sites, such as the Gulf of Georgia Cannery and Brittania Shipyards.  Prior to the second world war, Steveston was home to many Japanese immigrants who worked and prospered in the fishing industry.  These immigrants were taken to concentration camps during the internship of the Japanese during the war.  This marked a very dark time not only in Stevestons’ history but also in Canadas’.

Now it appears we again are considering making another disastrous mistake for the community of Steveston.

The Onni Group of Companies bought several acres of land around 2002/2003 and redeveloped the BC Packers site which was zoned as commercial land to residential.  They developed the site and named it Imperial Landing, where a large number of semi-detached homes, townhomes and condominiums were developed and sold.  The Onni Group made a fortune on this development!

Through this process, there was approximately 9 acres of prime, waterfront land that was originally zoned by the City of Richmond and Onni to be mixed commercial and residential.  This land was to be developed with a multi-purpose set of buildings, no more than four stories high with the main, ground floor being zoned for commericial use, specifically to be targeted for leasing of space relative to the fishing and marine industry.

The Onni Group has now petitioned the City of Richmond to permit this land to be rezoned strictly as residential.  Further, they want to develop two highrise condominium buildings on this site, one 12 stories and the other 10 stories high.  Highrise condominiums in Steveston!  Are they kidding?

If this is permitted to go through, this will forever change the character, grandeur and style of this historic fishing village.  The whole village should be deemed to be a historic, national site and protected as such.

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About Grant Fengstad

I’m a technology professional in the travel and transportation sector and have been very involved with the Internet for over 20 years.