Quebec & Montreal Redevelopment

James Bay, Victoria, BC

A proposal for new and affordable housing, meaningful community amenities and outstanding public spaces by the local development team at Mike Geric Construction

Vision

This proposal reimagines a surface parking lot in iconic James Bay. 

The vision is to build a development that will enhance its dynamic surroundings by adding to the character of this historic neighbourhood with a diverse range of housing, an improved pedestrian experience, exceptional public spaces and valuable amenities for residents and the broader community.

We acknowledge and respect the Lək̓ʷəŋən Peoples on whose traditional territory these lands are located

Project Overview

Quebec and Montreal is a mixed-use development proposal that includes 112 homes, a childcare centre, café and commercial space as well as public open spaces designed to increase walkability, community connectivity and pedestrian safety in the immediate neighbourhood.

Comprised of four buildings, the design is custom fit to the unique location with a thoughtful transition between the scale and character of the waterfront buildings along Quebec and Montreal Streets, with that of the single-family houses and townhomes to the south.

Site Design

An integrated approach to building and landscape architecture and urban design has been used to create a proposal to transform this surface parking lot site into a beautiful community amenity.

Completely redesigned street-frontages along Montreal, Quebec, and Kingston Streets include richly landscaped streetscapes with new trees and plants, innovative rain gardens, wide separated sidewalks and public furniture and lighting. A feature tree at the corner of Quebec and Montreal will add to a vibrant new public plaza that’s a welcoming community space.

Building Form

The buildings include one mixed-use tower and three groups of two and three-storey townhouses. The tower is positioned on the Northern corner of the site, closest to the taller buildings along the waterfront. It sits on a three-storey podium that’s been scaled to define a comfortable street frontage on Montreal and Quebec Streets.

The building is pivoted off the street grid to align with compass North, which narrows its shadow. The narrow and tall tower creates a sculptural architectural composition that will be an attractive addition to the local skyline with colour and materials that pick up on the historic brick and stone buildings of the Inner Harbour District.

Transportation

This site is centrally-located close to local shops, services and amenities. Potential enhancements to walkability and connectivity to, from and through this property include wider sidewalks, protected bike lanes that connect to the City’s AAA cycling network at Montreal St, improvements to the crosswalk at Kingston and Montreal and the potential addition of a crosswalk at Quebec and Montreal. 

Two electric vehicles are being considered for expansion of the local car-sharing network. Together with charging for e-bikes, secure bicycle storage and a resident bike repair station these investments will enhance the use of alternative transportation and offer a car-light living for residents in the area. Two levels of underground parking (146 spaces) are proposed to meet expected demand for all residential and commercial uses and new on-street parking for Quebec and Montreal Streets is proposed.

Housing

The projected number of new homes needed in the City of Victoria by 2025 is estimated to be 2,900. Finding opportunities to create a wide range of housing options is essential to ensuring we have homes available for all ages and incomes.

This proposal includes 112 new homes for James Bay and is being made in conjunction to a stand-alone purpose built affordable rental building that would be built in partnership with the Capital Regional Housing Corporation (“CRHC”) under the CRD’s Regional Housing First Program (“RHFP”).

The building, located on Menzies Street in James Bay, includes 46 one, two and three bedroom rental homes for residents within the Capital Regional (“CRD”). The mix of rent levels will be: 20% provincial income assistance units, 31% affordable units and 49% near-market units. 



Community Contributions

Public Realm Enhancements

A strengthened public realm will include protected bike lanes, crosswalk improvements, public plazas with seating areas and richly-landscaped street frontages. A dedicated public gathering space at the corner of Quebec and Montreal will improve visibility and create placemaking on this prominent corner.

Childcare Centre

There is a minimum 1-2 year wait list for childcare in Victoria, and James Bay ranks 3rd highest in lack of spaces. A not-for-profit childcare centre for up to 50 children is planned that will be located on Montreal Street with a rear courtyard playground.

Alternative Transportation

A variety of alternative transportation options exist in the neighbourhood and will be enhanced with improvements to cycling infrastructure, sidewalks and two electric carshare vehicles that will allow for new residents as well as neighbouring residents to live a car-light lifestyle .

Pedestrian Connectivity

The David Foster Pathway connects residents and visitors with key destinations in our city like the newly-dedicated Peter Pollen Park. The pathway is not yet complete and the development team is exploring ways to make improvements, including a crosswalk at the corner of Quebec and Montreal Streets.

Affordable Rental Housing

Mike Geric Construction is a demonstrated leader in providing diverse housing opportunities for all ages and incomes. An affordable rental building is being proposed in conjunction with this application, which will provide 46 affordable and attainable rental homes in a building owned and operated by Capital Region Housing Corporation.

Timeline

Spring 2021

• Purchased property
• Preliminary meetings with JBNA
• Pre-application meetings with City of Victoria

• Project Introduction
• Community Open House Events
• James Bay Development Review Committee

Summer 2021
Fall 2021

• Ongoing Community input online and in person
• Community Association Land Use Committee Meeting
• Rezoning/Development Permit Submission
• City of Victoria Staff Review

• Community Update
• Advisory Design Panel
• Ongoing community input online and in person

Spring 2022
Fall 2022

• Committee of the Whole
• Public Hearing

• Building Permit
• Site Preparation

2023

Commitment
To Engagement

Our team is committed to ongoing engagement for this proposed redevelopment. Through open house events, neighbour and community association meetings, we’ve had many opportunities to share ideas and listen to feedback that continues to be incorporated into our planning. Please reach out to our team with your thoughts, questions and feedback about this project at team@quebecandmontreal.ca.

Project Presentations

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Please share your thoughts and questions about the redevelopment of this parking lot located at Quebec, Montreal and Kingston Streets in James Bay, Victoria, BC.

    Mike Geric Construction is an award-winning local developer known for pioneering new technologies, creating high-quality diverse housing and building lasting positive relationships with neighbours, municipalities and the broader community.

    The talented team behind this development proposal understands the significance of this property and the opportunity to develop a valuable community asset with lasting positive impacts.