A handful of residents in Lantzville are expecting to gather tonight and protest against a proposed residential development.
On Monday evening, the District of Lantzville council will hold a public hearing for a proposed 280-unit development planned for 21.6 hectares of land known as the Clark/Medd properties near the Island Highway.
The proposed development is spearheaded by Lantzville Projects Ltd., who are planning to build 156 units of residential housing on the Clark Drive and 123 units on a triangle-shaped patch of land near Ware Road and Ronald Road.
Lantzville Projects Ltd. has submitted a zoning bylaw amendment and official community plan amendment application, which passed second reading earlier this year and will now head to a public hearing.
However, due to COVID-19, Lantzville’s public hearing will be held online this evening, which has prompted a number of people against the proposed development to hold a rally out front of Lantzville District Hall starting at 7 p.m.
Rachelle Mundell, a co-organizer of the protest, said residents are upset because the development exceeds the density allowed under the district’s Official Community Plan, and the proposal does not fit what is already in the neighbourhood.
“It’s pretty big and if you compare it to the current properties in the area, it is a stark contrast,” Mundell said.
“We are feeling very frustrated,” she later added.
Developments of this scale, until recently, were not common in Lantzville and the proposal comes after councillors adopted a brand new Official Community Plan in 2019.
Under the OCP, the Clark/Medd properties are part of an upper Lantzville special planning area, which permits a range of 130-195 housing units, far less than the 280 units Lantzville Projects is proposing.
It’s a fact that has some residents so upset that a petition against the development was circulated and has garnered more than 500 signatures, mostly from residents nearby properties.
“We want council to hold true to the spirit and integrity of the OCP and stick to the guidelines of the OCP,” she said.
Mundell said physical distancing will be practiced and those coming to tonight’s protest should wear masks and follow all COVID-19 safety precautions.