An update on Delta townhouse proposal at golf course

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Application must still go to Delta council for preliminary approval before public hearing

The proponent behind the application to build a townhouse project fronting the Beach Grove Golf Club in Tsawwassen continues to refine the proposal.

In an update to the Optimist, realtor Dean Bauck said the development in the 5700 block of 16th Avenue, has seen a number of changes, including a decrease in the number of proposed units from 22 to 20.

The zoning bylaw would allow for more units on a site the same size, he explained.

The application is to subdivide a portion of 5847 12th Ave. and consolidate it with 5766 16th Ave. in order to construct the townhouses on the development site.

The remainder of the property would continue to be a part of the Beach Grove Golf Club.

Several other changes were made to the proposal, including increasing the viewline space to the golf course, pushing visitor parking away from the front setback, retaining and relocating as many trees as possible and replacing those removed on a three-to-one basis.

Among the other changes, the applicant proposes to install an additional raised crosswalk at 16th Ave. at 57th St.

Bauck also noted Delta planning staff have asked the proponent to take the proposed changes to the community for further feedback. A website was created at ZEN16.com which has details.

Noting there’s been a noticeable uptick in interest in golf and new memberships since COVID-19, golf club past president Larry Wobick in a presentation at a Delta council workshop last summer explained how the golf facility and its 900-members are not just part of the social fabric of the community, they are the community.

He explained how the golf club is currently carrying a $325,000 annual payment on a multi-million dollar mortgage taken out years earlier for needed upgrades, and how erasing that debt through the proposed land deal, which would only go through if the project was approved, would ensure the long-term financial picture remains positive with good fiscal management.

Asked if another proposal may be coming along in a few years to remove more land from the course, he replied they don’t see that happening with the elimination of their debt combined with an apparent renewal in interest in their sport.

The solution being proposed could be for at least 25-to-35 years, he added.

“At this particular point in time we’re currently managing our debt. Are we going broke tomorrow? Absolutely not. But, long-term, if we do not get rid of that mortgage we will, in fact, encounter some hardship down the road without retiring that mortgage. It’s not dissimilar to someone retiring. You wouldn’t want to retire on a retirement income with a huge mortgage, it wouldn’t be doable. We need to retire that debt in order to be competitive,” said Wobick.

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