823-841 Sixth Street

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

Consultation has concluded

Rendering of proposed building at 823-841 Sixth Street


A Public Hearing was held on May 31, 2021, after which Council supported the application to change the Official Community Plan and Zoning.

Click here to view the Public Hearing and Council Meeting recordings from May 31, and click here to read the Council package and all public correspondence received.



What's being proposed?

Applications for a rezoning and an Official Community Plan amendment have been submitted on behalf of the Aboriginal Land Trust Society (ALT) for 823 – 841 Sixth Street. The proposal is a six-storey affordable housing apartment building with 96 units. The project affordability is set to meet BC Housing's Community Housing Fund.

The proposed development would have a floor space ratio (FSR) of 2.3, providing 20 three-bedroom units (21%), 37 two-bedroom units (38%), and 39 one-bedroom units (41%) which exceeds the requirements of the City’s Family Friendly Housing Policy. Vehicle and long term bike parking for the site would be located on one level of underground parking.

Click here to view drawings of the proposed development.


How can I engage?

There have been multiple opportunities for the public to provide feedback through the application review process. The process included applicant-led consultation and review by City committees. The review process has been iterative and revisions were considered, based on consultation feedback, throughout the process.

A Public Hearing was held on Monday, May 31, 2021, after which Council voted to support the application. All opportunities for engagement with this application are now complete.


A Public Hearing was held on May 31, 2021, after which Council supported the application to change the Official Community Plan and Zoning.

Click here to view the Public Hearing and Council Meeting recordings from May 31, and click here to read the Council package and all public correspondence received.



What's being proposed?

Applications for a rezoning and an Official Community Plan amendment have been submitted on behalf of the Aboriginal Land Trust Society (ALT) for 823 – 841 Sixth Street. The proposal is a six-storey affordable housing apartment building with 96 units. The project affordability is set to meet BC Housing's Community Housing Fund.

The proposed development would have a floor space ratio (FSR) of 2.3, providing 20 three-bedroom units (21%), 37 two-bedroom units (38%), and 39 one-bedroom units (41%) which exceeds the requirements of the City’s Family Friendly Housing Policy. Vehicle and long term bike parking for the site would be located on one level of underground parking.

Click here to view drawings of the proposed development.


How can I engage?

There have been multiple opportunities for the public to provide feedback through the application review process. The process included applicant-led consultation and review by City committees. The review process has been iterative and revisions were considered, based on consultation feedback, throughout the process.

A Public Hearing was held on Monday, May 31, 2021, after which Council voted to support the application. All opportunities for engagement with this application are now complete.

CLOSED: This discussion has concluded.

There have been multiple opportunities for the public to provide feedback through the application review process. The process included applicant-led consultation and review by City committees. The review process has been iterative and revisions were considered, based on consultation feedback, throughout the process.

A Public Hearing was held on Monday, May 31, 2021, after which Council voted to support the application. All opportunities for engagement with this application are now complete.

  • Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    I saw that when the project was first proposed, 903 Sixth Street was also included. If that plot is included, there will be nearly 8000 sqft more land for the building (with the shared path set at the north end). In that case, the same number of units could be built with a much less FSR and height of the building could be lower. It will bring less impact to the neighboring properties. I am not sure why 903 Sixth Street was latter dropped from the project.

    Nancy asked over 1 year ago

    The Pre-Application Review (PAR) inquiry submitted to the City was for 823 – 903 Sixth Street. The proposal design did not include 903 Sixth Street, but identified the opportunity for the property to be added to the project site. Staff recommended the property not be incorporated due to the City’s desire to implement the Uptown Streetscape Vision, which proposes a mid-block pedestrian and cyclist connection between Sixth and Fifth Streets. The optimal location for this pathway is along the northern edge of 841 Sixth Street. At their August 31, 2020 meeting, the Land Use and Planning Committee (LUPC) supported this direction. Based on this feedback the formal rezoning and Official Community Plan amendment application did not include 903 Sixth Street.

  • Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    What does "affordable" mean? Be specific please - is this tied to income?

    Digdiggerdug asked over 1 year ago

    Project affordability levels would be set to meet BC Housing's Community Housing Fund, which would result in the project having the following mix of rents and income limits:

    • 30% affordable housing (moderate income),
    • 50% rent geared to income (housing income limit), and
    • 20% deep subsidy.

    BC Housing’s definitions for rent geared to income and deep subsidy align with the City’s affordability criteria. All units and rental rates would be secured through a Housing Agreement registered on title.

  • Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    Further to your response to Seeker below: "It is our understanding that townhouse projects are difficult to qualify for funding from senior levels of government, as preference is shown for projects that deliver more units, and the applicant has indicated that providing affordable housing in a townhouse format would not be financially viable". Firstly, your response indicates that a Townhouse project could be approved or qualify for funding from senior levels of government. If you do not know if a project developed following the OCP of RH -residential infill townhouse could be approved for funding, why would the City not find that out? Or, why would you not ask the applicant to find that out? Secondly, when the applicant says it is "not financially viable" to build townhomes - it begs the question financially viable for whom? the applicant? Has the applicant provided any documentation to show that building townhouses under the OCP, would be any less financially viable than the current project proposed? Has the city requested any such documentation?

    lh asked over 1 year ago

    It is well-understood across the region that financial viability is often the biggest hurdle for delivering new affordable housing units. This is particularly true of 100% affordable rental projects such as this one because the income from the affordable rents is much lower than the income from a market rental or condo project. This means that funds for the costs of development, instead being supported by the project’s income, must be supported by senior levels of government. Therefore, the financial plan for an affordable housing project must comply with the standards set by senior levels of government in order to qualify for funding, and the City does not play a role in this determination.  

    With limited funding and an expanding housing crisis, it is a very competitive process to be approved for funding from the senior levels of government. Many projects that qualify for funding are not approved. The evaluation process scores projects on a number of criteria that help identify the strongest of the qualifying applications. A range of factors are considered, such as the number of units created.

    Overall, the applicant has developed an affordable housing project which they believe will be successful in the bid for senior government funding; it is up to the senior levels of government whether or not to approve funding. The applicant has a lawful right to apply to the City to have the Official Community Plan and zoning for the subject properties amended to allow their proposed development; it will be up to Council to determine whether or not to approve these amendments.


  • Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    Was there a proper traffic and shadowing study? And do you have records for the public to view? I have heard that the traffic study wasn’t done and that the Shadow study finished at 3pm, which appears to be a bias study and doesn’t include the majority of the afternoon (on the longest day of the year sets at 9pm).

    Ashley Ogilvie asked over 1 year ago

    A traffic statement is being prepared for this application and will be submitted to the City for review.  

    A shadow analysis was conducted and is included in the report to the New Westminster Design Panel, available here. The applicant was asked to submit a revised shadow study with additional details (such as the shadow analysis for 6 p.m.), which is available here

  • Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    I have read many instances in the OCP documents of how its designed to attract cultural/ethnic diversity. It seems very odd that the city would entertain a large project where all but 2 small minorities are excluded from being allowed to live in it. Would it not seem logical that any new affordable housing projects would be in line with the values of diversity outlined in the OCP?

    Stay Within the OCP asked over 1 year ago

    Council’s strategic plan, which acts as the road map for steering the City's activities on behalf of the community, lays out the vision for New Westminster: A vibrant, compassionate, sustainable city that includes everyone. It also includes core values that are interwoven into everything we do as we fulfill our vision. One of these core values is: Inclusion - we place high value on the principles of equality and equity and strive to build an environment where everyone is included, valued, and treated with dignity and respect.

    The principle of equity is key in the way the City provides services that ensure our community is safe, healthy, and meets our residents' needs.  Equity requires fair treatment according to each person’s needs and situation. This is different from equality which involves everyone receiving exactly the same treatment. Equality only works if everyone starts from the same place. Equity recognizes that everyone does not.

    The City, in facilitating the provision of affordable housing, gives equal consideration to the full spectrum of housing needs, from non and below-market housing through to affordable home ownership.  Through that we identify where there are gaps in housing types along the spectrum, and work to create policy and facilitate projects to fill those gaps. One of the gaps identified in the spectrum is housing for at-risk and vulnerable populations who have more difficulty than others in accessing affordable housing in New Westminster, and across the region. 

    The principle of equity requires that more support be given to accommodate persons with multiple barriers to housing, which is why many of our affordable housing projects are focused on groups such as women and their children fleeing abusive situations, persons living with disabilities, those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, and in the case of 823-841 Sixth Street, indigenous and newcomer groups. It is only by providing the most assistance to those having more barriers to housing that we will be able to achieve our vision of a vibrant, compassionate, inclusive and sustainable city.  

  • Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    In-Fill Townhouses The builder’s choice of site and type of building (six story) shows a disregard for the City’s recently developed Official Community Plan proposed zoning and several key components including OCP Policy 8.6 “Provide housing to meet the needs of the projected population in ways that ensure growth contributes positively to the neighbourhood context.” and 8.6 (a) “Work with neighbourhoods and developers to address neighbourhood concerns and ensure that new developments are designed with respect to the neighbourhood context.” The six story building proposed also requires parking and other variances. The City is considering the proposal because of the larger community benefits and priorities. Wouldn’t an in-fill townhouse development meet or exceed these same community benefits and priorities as listed below? Specifically, a townhouse development could comply with the OCP zoning designation and also meet the social housing requirements for the City’s Family Friendly Housing and Inclusionary Housing policy and BC Housing’s Community Housing fund. Wouldn’t a social housing in-fill townhouse development meet or exceed the City’s community housing needs for densification and ground-oriented options, add to the City’s rental housing stock and contribute to shaping growth in a responsible way? How many six story housing units does the city have in the midst of residential neighborhoods that don’t have a mix of commercial businesses on the block or street?

    Seeker asked over 1 year ago

    It is a high priority of the City to see new affordable housing units developed throughout the city, and the City is looking to achieve this through both City-led projects and projects by external non-profit applicants. This application was initiated by an external non-profit applicant, not the City, which means the City does not have input on the selection of a location. Instead, it is the City’s responsibility to evaluate the application in the context of City policies and priorities.

    Any property owner (or authorized representative) is entitled to make an application to change the zoning and the Official Community Plan designation of their property. The application review process includes consultation opportunities to ensure that the City can understand and try and find ways to address any issues, and that Council has the opportunity to hear from the community before deciding whether or not to support the proposed changes.

    The City is seeking affordable housing opportunities in neighbourhoods across the city, including City-led projects on City-owned land (e.g., in Downtown, Queensborough, and Connaught Heights), through the new Inclusionary Housing Policy which requires affordable units to be included in most multi-unit residential developments, and through applicant-initiated projects like this one.

    It is our understanding that townhouse projects are difficult to qualify for funding from senior levels of government, as preference is shown for projects that deliver more units, and the applicant has indicated that providing affordable housing in a townhouse format would not be financially viable.  

  • Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    Looking at the Development Timeline process to the right, WHERE is the city-led consultation with the public? Is this website it?

    LenaJ asked over 1 year ago

    City-led consultation for development applications is done in one of two ways. For applications that do not require an Official Community Plan amendment, the City holds a public open house, often in addition to a separate, applicant-led open house. Depending on the outcome of that process, Council may determine to waive the requirement for a Public Hearing. All of these meetings are currently held virtually due to the pandemic.

    For applications that require an Official Community Plan amendment, the application is presented to the Advisory Planning Commission where the public may speak, and a Public Hearing is held, where the public may speak directly to Council. The applicant is generally also required to hold a public open house. As the development application for 823-841 Sixth Street requires an Official Community Plan amendment, it is being reviewed under this process.

    At least ten days before both the APC meeting and Public Hearing, the City will mail notifications to properties within 100 metres (328 feet) of 823-841 Sixth Street. Information will also be posted on the Be Heard page. The Public Hearing will be advertised in the local newspaper. Any person who thinks their interests may be affected by the application has the opportunity to express their opinion to APC and/or Council in writing or as a delegation to the APC meeting and/or Public Hearing. All submitted written comments will be distributed to APC/Council (depending on which meeting they were submitted for) and posted on the City’s website. The applicant may also comment. APC/Council members may ask questions of the speakers and staff. 

    When the application is ready to advance to the APC, a comment form will be added on the Be Heard page, creating further opportunity to give feedback directly to the City.  

  • Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    The drawings show garbage bins on the back lanes of the project. Will the garbage bins be on the lane 24-7? Since the properties across the lane are allowed to have laneway homes, how are the laneway home dwellers going to deal with facing the garbage of 90+units? Would you consider moving the garbage bins to somewhere else so that laneway home dwellers across the lane are not living next to garbage of over 200 people?

    Blair asked over 1 year ago

    The “garbage staging” space adjacent to the lane would allow the bins to be stored while waiting for pick up, rather than being left in the lane. The receptacles would be located in a garbage and recycling room on the parkade level, which you can see on page 40 of the New Westminster Design Panel package.

  • Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    It's unclear to me from the drawings how close the building is to the track and playing field and what impact the building's shade would have there? The field and track are heavily used and it would take away from the enjoyment and comfort to lose sun there. I would be very concerned about any negative impact to the sporting areas. Thanks.

    Barbara asked over 1 year ago

    The proposed site is south-east of the track, across from the new school.  A shadow analysis (and site map) are included on page 35 of the January 26, 2021 report to the New Westminster Design Panel, which you can view under the Development Review Timeline & Links tab or by clicking here. The shadow analysis indicates no impact on the track.

  • Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

    In regards to the below traffic question. Can you clarify the use of the alley connection from the lane to 5th Street for vehicle access? In the CoNW Uptown Streetscape Vision Report Sect 50 Pg 49/50 it indicates a MUP is to be built to 5th Street to align with the Proposed Projects MUP from 6th Street. If this is to be the case would it not prevent vehicles from using the alley to access the lane as the alley is not wide enough (<3m) to accommodate both pedestrians and vehicles? Would this not result in the lane being dead ended at the North end with a single right in / right out at 8th to service potential two way vehicle and truck traffic in the lane?

    Dave asked over 1 year ago

    The final route of the multi-use path has not yet been determined. The Uptown Streetscape Vision(External link), which includes the Sixth Street and Sixth Avenue “Great Streets,” includes different options for a cycling connection between the New Westminster Secondary School and the Rotary Crosstown Greenway on Seventh Avenue (section 5.7). The City is currently exploring securing the mid-block multi-use pathway through this project, which would provide more options for the implementation of the Vision.  The applicant is preparing a Transportation Statement which is a multi-modal assessment that will also help inform the final design.