Clarenville council to give land for seniors housing

Town hopeful for summer construction

Kevin Curley
Published on February 10, 2016
Packet file photo
Recreation committee Coun. David Harris.

With Clarenville’s greying population, the town is exploring the possibility of making more seniors’ housing available.

At the most recent Clarenville council meeting, David Harris, chairman of the Mayor’s Advisory of the Committee on Housing, said developers are challenged to find access to affordable land to develop.

“Council is exploring the possibility of partnering with a developer to build a seniors’ housing development. Council’s contribution would be to provide a parcel of land and develop a request for proposals and award the land to the developer who best meets the requirements,” Harris told council.

A piece of land has been identified behind Wal-Mart off Mahoney Drive that is owned by the town.

“It’s been expressed to me on a number of occasions the difficulty seniors have finding smaller accommodations in Clarenville and the wait list for the current ones are extensively long,” said Mayor Frazer Russell.

Russell said he has also heard from developers who have wanted to build seniors’ housing but land was unavailable.

“We thought that in order provide incentive we would provide the land and also it would be an opportunity to foster some economic development this summer which is really going to be a slow summer. In our request for proposals this is something that we want done this year,” said Russell.

He added giving the land to the developer would mean savings would be passed on the tenant and it would fill a hole in the town.

Coun. Paul Tilley said the location would be ideal since it is close to all shopping amenities and relatively close to the Dr. G.B. Cross Memorial Hospital.

“As an added bonus it further extends the road to open up more property in behind Wal-Mart,” added Coun. Harris.

Council approved the motion to zone the land from commercial to residential and to put out a request for proposals to find a suitable developer.