University Heights, building A is proposal for a six-storey mixed-use rental and retail complex at Cedar Hill Road and McKenzie Avenue in Saanich. The building is part of a redevelopment of the southern half of University Heights Shopping Centre bordered by McKenzie Avenue, Cedar Hill Road and Shelbourne Street.
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It has been changed quite a bit. Height is down and unit count is way up. Over 500 rental units.
It's no longer a concrete build. The amount of piles and caissons required to support the weight made it impractical. Now it's wood frame on a raft.
The complex is more outward-facing. There's more public space inside. A mix of studio, one, two, and three bedroom units. A significant affordable housing contribution.
The overall design doesn't strike me as being as interesting as the initial plan but it works for me.
The usual neighbour complaints about 272 residential parking spaces not being enough for 500-odd apartment units but I'm sure that's a good amount for a rental project at this location.
...The overall design doesn't strike me as being as interesting as the initial plan....
In other words it's been Victorianized or as I now like to call the dumbing down of perfectly good proposals, it's been "northern junked".
Anything on whether the movie theater would be retained?
^You know, I did not ask that. I did last time and I got a lukewarm "possibly" so I think the answer is no. They did have a "wish list" of prospective local and international tenants. Places like Discovery Coffee, Oak Bay Bikes or Russ Hay Bikes, White Spot,Bin 4 Burger, Save-On-Foods, Shoppers Drug Mart, London Drugs etc.
Saanich's J.J. Morgan Restaurant to close after decades in business as University Heights redev nears
A staple of Victoria's dining industry on Cedar Hill Road at McKenzie Avenue will close April 30th.
A large-scale mixed-use modernization of a Saanich shopping plaza on McKenzie Avenue at Shelbourne Street is on the back burner.
Over 350 residences and some 180,000 square feet of commercial space are planned to modernize the aging Saanich shopping complex.