‘It will be an attraction’: Landmark 26-storey development approved by Esquimalt council

'It will be an attraction': Landmark 26-storey development approved by Esquimalt council

A new landmark development, standing 26-stories tall, will soon be taking over the Carlton Club lands in Esquimalt.

In a five-to-two vote Monday night, Esquimalt council approved the project called “The 900s,” which will bring 272 housing units and revitalized commercial space to the corners of Esquimalt Road, Carlton Place and Head Street.

“It’s going to be a place where people are going to want to come, to shop, and it will be an attraction,” Esquimalt Mayor Barbara Desjardins told CHEK News.

The project’s developer, GMC Projects Inc., says the new complex will be divided into two buildings: a 26-storey condominium with 156 owned units and an eight-story rental apartment building with 96 units.

Both buildings would include commercial space, above-ground parking that can be designed to be converted into residential or commercial space in the future, and multiple community amenities.

“We’ve got 10,000 feet of new public space, plaza space, a parklet at the corner with an existing Garry oak tree and including a 3,000-square-foot dog park that will be accessible to the public off Carlton Terrace,” Jordan Milne, GMC Projects Inc. president & CEO, said.

Amenities for the building’s residents include a fitness centre and yoga studio, provisions for pets like a dog wash station and dog lounge, a meeting or co-working space, a sound-proof music room, a craft or media room, an indoor entertaining space with a kitchen, a games area, and an expansive outdoor area that includes an outdoor kitchen and barbecue space.

Milne added the company is making a $1 million contribution to affordability delivered by below-market rents, with $200,000 of that set aside to prioritize Songhees and Esquimalt Nation members.

This new development will tower over Esquimalt and the Greater Victoria region.

The new 26-story building will double Esquimalt’s current tallest building, The Vista, which stands 12-stories tall.

It will also briefly become the region’s tallest building, as it will be one storey taller than the 25-story Hudson Place One.

The Roundhouse at Bayview Place development will quickly take over that title, with some of its buildings reaching 32 storeys.

READ MORE: Roundhouse project moves forward: Victoria council gives historic housing project in Vic West the green light

Some residents in Esquimalt aren’t excited about the new addition to the community’s skyline, calling it too tall.

“It blocks all the people even up the hill,” Margaret Scott-Peters said Tuesday afternoon.

Patrick Hikinbottom said he believes it will overload the community.

“It’s just not going to fit in with it,” he added.

While height was also a concern for council, Desjardins said the economic and housing benefits outweighed that.

“There’s been a lot of thinking, and at the end of the day, council members felt that we need to look forward to the future of what kind of housing needs will be required in Esquimalt and also the revitalization of the commercial space,” she said.

Desjardins said the GMC Projects Inc. will now work with municipal staff to finalize the project details, with those coming back to council at a later date.

Presales for the condo units could start as early as next spring with construction getting underway in 2025.

Mackenzie ReadMackenzie Read

Recent Stories

Send us your news tips and videos!