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Travino Square
Use: condo
Address: Travino Lane
Municipality: Saanich
Region: Urban core
Storeys: 6
Condo units: 58 (studio/bachelor, 1BR, 2BR)
Sales status: sold out / resales only
Travino Square is the second phase of the four phased Travino Royal Oak development in the municipality of Saa... (view full profile)
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[Royal Oak - Saanich] Travino Royal Oak | Condos | up to 6-storeys | First phase built - completed in 2015


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#1 aastra

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Posted 16 February 2008 - 02:57 PM

What's the deal with this one? This writer is opposed to it, whatever it is:

Royal Oak plan too tall, too dense
Times Colonist
Published: Friday, February 15, 2008

I am a resident of the Royal Oak area and am very concerned about the area's future. We have been informed that a developer has bought the Royal Oak school property.

...there would be two 10-storey buildings. Now it appears the developer wants to add another two storeys to the project.

Along with the two 12-storey buildings, the developer now also wants to put in low-income housing to sweeten the deal for Saanich. We already have a significant portion of the low-income housing of Victoria and surrounding area within a six-block radius of here.

http://www.canada.co...0f-c3a91a30cac4

#2 amor de cosmos

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Posted 16 February 2008 - 03:45 PM

What's the deal with this one? This writer is opposed to it, whatever it is:

I am a resident of the Royal Oak area and am very concerned about the area's future. We have been informed that a developer has bought the Royal Oak school property.

...there would be two 10-storey buildings. Now it appears the developer wants to add another two storeys to the project.

Along with the two 12-storey buildings, the developer now also wants to put in low-income housing to sweeten the deal for Saanich. We already have a significant portion of the low-income housing of Victoria and surrounding area within a six-block radius of here.


it's this:


I don't know if there's a plan or renderings at this point.

#3 renthefinn

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Posted 17 February 2008 - 09:33 PM

I went to that school.

#4 amor de cosmos

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 03:29 PM

the latest:

Cheers and jeers in Royal Oak
By Erin Cardone - Saanich News - February 27, 2008

A proposal to build 50 affordable housing units in Royal Oak could be the answer to hundreds of prayers.

There’s been a growing need for affordable housing in the region and it’s high time someone did something about it, said developer Ed Geric. So Mike Geric Construction, named after Ed’s brother, dedicated a six-storey building to providing 20 rental units, 20 co-ownership units and 10 units for sale below market value. The development would be on 2.8 hectares of land the company owns at 4564 West Saanich Rd., the site of the old Royal Oak middle school.

“Affordable housing right now is on everybody’s mind,” Geric said. “Everybody talks about it, but we’re doing something about it.”

Geric added that he prefers to call these units attainable over affordable.

Here’s how it works: the first and second floors in the building will be “market rental” units.

The 20 units will be owned by Mike Geric Construction for an agreed-upon amount of time (15 years was cited as a common term) and rental rates will be in accordance with Capital Region Housing Corporation guidelines – around $1,200 a month for a two-bedroom unit.

The third and fourth floors are designated for co-ownership. Mike Geric Construction would share ownership of those 20 units 50-50 with the buyer, meaning a unit that might be worth $500,000 in today’s market would cost the buyer $250,000.

The buyer is responsible for the taxes, strata fees, and other such costs.

“It allows people to get into the market at half the cost,” Ed Geric said. When the homeowner wants to sell, the next buyer picks up the unit for half the market value at that time. Again, Mike Geric Construction might half-own these units for around 15 years.

The remaining 10 units on the fifth floor would be sold for 10-15 per cent below market value.

“What I’m hearing loud and clear is it’s time we get putting up some units because just putting money into a fund doesn’t make it happen,” Ed Geric said.

Herbert Kwan, the architect responsible for designing the 238-unit project, said the “attainable” development is long-overdue.

“In the past five years, there hasn’t been one affordable housing unit built,” he said. Local governments, the Capital Regional District and B.C. Housing Corporation “don’t have the funding for this kind of market.” The units are not government-subsidized.

Bob Gillespie, a Saanich councillor and member of the CRD housing board, was thrilled to hear of Geric’s proposal.

“I certainly support it because it’s the first time in this area someone’s come along with these new ideas,” Gillespie said. “Lots of people put ideas together, but not like this. I certainly support this type of thinking.”

Mike Geric Construction has completed two open houses to pitch the development to the community, although reception two the two tall towers on the site at 12 storeys each has been negative. Ed Geric wouldn’t confirm a timeframe of when the project might be presented to Saanich council for rezoning approval.

Kwan wants to see new developments with attainable units become the norm in coming years.

“What we’re hoping is Saanich will adopt this as a blueprint for affordable housing,” he said.

http://www.bclocalne...s/16011917.html


Reaching for the sky discouraged
By Erin Cardone - Saanich News - February 27, 2008

Some neighbours upset with height of proposed towers

When Spencer Evans bought what he calls his “mid-life crisis dream home” in Royal Oak, he didn’t expect two 12-storey towers to pop up in his backyard three years later.

But if everything goes according to plan for Mike Geric Construction, the company that bought the excess land at Royal Oak middle school at 4564 West Saanich Rd., that’s exactly what will happen.

“They would be towering right over top of our street and our yard,” Evans said, adding, “We bought out here so we wouldn’t have huge, tall towers.”

At an open house Feb. 20, Mike Geric Construction showed neighbours their plans to build the two 12-storey towers, along with a six-storey condominium on the 2.8 hectares of land. The development would include 238 residential units.

“I was shocked – my blood pressure was roaring,” Evans said of his experience at the open house. “There were very strong feelings. It was clear the residents were just aghast at seeing two 12-storeys and a six-storey in that area. It’s really going to scar the landscape.”

Evans hopes that, with the support of the Royal Oak Community Association, enough opposition to the development can be drummed up to keep it from being approved when it comes to Saanich council.

But Ed Geric of Mike Geric Construction feels the development proposal is a good one. It has a small footprint thanks to the height of the towers, which leaves more green space for neighbours to enjoy.

“Residents don’t want it to happen. That’s the challenge a developer faces,” Geric said, recognizing one of his biggest challenges lies in getting the community on board with the proposal.

Evans added the draft official community plan, which is based on a survey of hundreds of Saanich residents’ vision of the municipality for the next four years, states a maximum height of eight storeys is ideal for major centres, including Royal Oak.

“The biggest concern out of the whole meeting was the height,” Evans said. “If they kept it (all) to six storeys, I’m sure they could push it through quite easily. We’ll give up some green space if need be – we’re right on the ALR.

“I know there’s going to be lots of changes in Royal Oak, (but) everything in this development is going opposite of the OCP. I don’t want to live in (a city resembling) Colwood.”

http://www.bclocalne...s/16011927.html

12 stories isn't quite what I'd call "reaching for this guy." I think that would still make them the tallest buildings in Saanich. & There's something funny about the guy comparing Royal Oak with Colwood now....

#5 D.L.

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 03:38 PM

The remaining 10 units on the fifth floor would be sold for 10-15 per cent below market value.

When the original owners of these units decide to sell, can they sell at market value, or do they too have to sell below market value?

#6 gumgum

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 03:41 PM

12 stories isn't quite what I'd call "reaching for this guy." I think that would still make them the tallest buildings in Saanich. & There's something funny about the guy comparing Royal Oak with Colwood now....


Interesting typo.;)

#7 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 03:43 PM

Iain Hunter from the T-C had a column about this the other day -- I actually found myself agreeing with him (ever since his weird column on downtown, I've wondered about him): As housing prices rise, communities lose. He seems to get a lot of space (word count) for his column, 'cause it wasn't until page 2 that he cut to the chase, which was this:

For Pete's sake, the rental units proposed for the Royal Oak development would be for people earning $40,000 to $60,000 a year, who'd be able to pay up to $1,200 monthly rent. That might not interest Conrad Black, but it's just the price range for Gen-Y people starting out to make their first million.

And what do these young people do if the affordable housing they need is continually demolished by determined neighbours before it even gets off the preliminary draft? Do they live in a trailer? Spend all they have on something they can't afford? Move somewhere else?

Do we really want to make their young lives miserable? Do we really want to send them away and lose what they can contribute to the community?

http://www.canada.co...b778d5c74bc&p=2

That middle paragraph is it, it's the question, especially the last sentence.
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#8 Mike K.

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 03:46 PM

I can appreciate the concerns here, but are the sentiments against this particular location or against highrises and density in general? Anyways, are stand-alone suburban towers really the answer? There are towers just like that all over suburban Edmonton and they look awful nestled in among low-density single family dwellings.

Let's concentrate density and taller buildings around retail areas or already higher density nodes (like adjacent to or on the parking lots of Royal Oak Shopping Centre or Broadmead Centre).

As for Hunter's concerns, I think we should leave housing choices up to individuals. If young people can live happily in tiny Manhattan lofts and pay several grand a month for the privilege, they can survive here without resorting to "trailers." Last I checked one can rent a beautiful two-bedroom downtown apartment for $1000 and there's no shortage of them in that price range. As for young individuals fretting over getting into local real-estate, why bother? Invest elsewhere and set yourself up for financial stability through alternative means. If you're earning $100,000 a year you'll be paying most of your take-home salary to the bank and associated ownership costs, anyways. Renting is not as bad as many make it out to be especially if an individual is earning enough money that they have the ability to invest larger sums in lucrative funds or stocks.

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#9 Ms. B. Havin

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 04:02 PM

^ Sure, but some of those units would be rented out. Condos are the new rentals, remember?

Re. density/ taller buildings: That area is home to two shopping malls (one of which is on the other side of the highway, but it's really not far), and the Royal Oak exchange (buses) is there, too. It's also a hop-skip-jump to the Vancouver Island Technology Park (in fact, you can cut across a field from the development site and WALK there).
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#10 amor de cosmos

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 04:08 PM

Let's concentrate density and taller buildings around retail areas or already higher density nodes (like adjacent to or on the parking lots of Royal Oak Shopping Centre or Broadmead Centre).

I thought the Tillicum Mall area or the area around Oak/Cloverdale would be much better neighbourhoods for density. This ROMS thing might just create even more traffic on Wilkinson. But then again it's also close to the school & Royal Oak Shopping Centre & Broadmead Village...

#11 Mike K.

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 04:20 PM

Just eyeballing the location on Google maps and its proximity to Broadmead and Royal Oak, I still think the majority of individuals will drive to either shopping centre. Broadmead is about 1 kilometer away along the sidewalk.

These types of developments need to be adjacent to shopping centres and not a kilometer or half a kilometer away. People need to feel immediately connected to their retail centre in order to use it without their vehicle. The best example of a disconnect and a connection in action is in Vic West with the Songhees and the new residential developments around West Side Village. Residents of the Songhees (500-700m) drive (disconnected from WSV) while residents from the co-op or other nearby developments walk (connected to WSV).

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#12 aastra

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 04:21 PM

“We bought out here so we wouldn’t have huge, tall towers.”

Interesting. The use of "out here" suggests there are "huge, tall towers" in...Victoria? I thought there weren't any tall buildings in Victoria? One day there is, the next day there isn't, depending on what issue we're discussing.

It was clear the residents were just aghast at seeing two 12-storeys and a six-storey in that area. It’s really going to scar the landscape.”

Beach Drive in Oak Bay has a couple of older buildings that are 10 stories tall. Do you think of scarred landscapes when you think of Beach Drive? Sayward Hill in Saanich has a bunch of buildings that are 6 stories tall. Do you think of scarred landscapes when you think of Sayward Hill?

A person can like/dislike taller buildings all he wants, but the claim that a 6-story building would "scar the landscape" suggests a pretty serious loss of perspective.

I'll never understand the angst these suburbanites have with regards to all things urban. When they drive into Victoria, does their blood pressure start roaring? Do they mourn for humanity when they see Camosack Manor?

#13 aastra

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 04:23 PM

That said, I think they're probably right when they say 12 stories would be too tall for Royal Oak.

But opposing 6 stories is ludicrous.

#14 jklymak

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 09:23 PM

Do they mourn for humanity when they see Camosack Manor?


I do.

But maybe I'm spoiled by Victoria's laudable decision to make most of the other prominent hills in town public domain.

#15 amor de cosmos

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Posted 09 March 2008 - 04:22 PM

Apparently there's a plan to move the old Royal Oak schoolhouse & build a 12-story building at the corner of West Saanich Rd & Elk Lake Dr. Here's all I know about it so far:
http://www.gov.saani...nichjan2508.pdf

#16 aastra

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Posted 09 March 2008 - 06:10 PM

I do.

But maybe I'm spoiled by Victoria's laudable decision to make most of the other prominent hills in town public domain.


Fair comment. My point was, life is still worth living even if you're able to see a building or two when you survey the local landscape from your back porch. Personally, I like seeing prominent buildings in the distance, like Camosack Manor or Craigdarroch Castle or the Young Building at Camosun or Government House or the Cridge Centre or that apartment building up by Spencer Castle or even the apartment building on Mt. Tolmie. Most of those aren't works of art, and yet I'd prefer their presence to their absence any day. I like the city. I'm not bothered by visual reminders of its existence. But then I'm also not from Royal Oak.

#17 Nparker

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Posted 09 March 2008 - 07:33 PM

Apparently there's a plan to move the old Royal Oak schoolhouse & build a 12-story building at the corner of West Saanich Rd & Elk Lake Dr.


Are you sure the proposal is for a 12-story building? I was past that site earlier today and the re-zoning sign states a proposal for a 47 unit development with retail (presumably on the ground floor). The relocation of the school house is part of the rezoning request.

It seems to me that it would be unlikely that a 47 unit building would be 12 floors in height. That's fewer than 4 units/floor. I live in a 46 unit building, 18 units of which are townhouses (or semi-townhouses) and the maximum height of my building is 4 floors. I can't see any reason this project would have to be so tall. The size and shape of the lot certainly does not dictate tall and skinny.

Also a 12-story building at this location would pretty much obliterate the view from the newly completed building that sits directly behind this site. I know that no one owns a view, but certainly one must be allowed to "rent" it at least for a while.

#18 amor de cosmos

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Posted 09 March 2008 - 09:06 PM

Are you sure the proposal is for a 12-story building? I was past that site earlier today and the re-zoning sign states a proposal for a 47 unit development with retail (presumably on the ground floor). The relocation of the school house is part of the rezoning request.

It seems to me that it would be unlikely that a 47 unit building would be 12 floors in height. That's fewer than 4 units/floor. I live in a 46 unit building, 18 units of which are townhouses (or semi-townhouses) and the maximum height of my building is 4 floors. I can't see any reason this project would have to be so tall. The size and shape of the lot certainly does not dictate tall and skinny.


I was told 12 stories but I think you're right, the math doesn't really add up. If there are 6 units on each floor it would be ~9 stories, 8 units on each floor would be 7 stories, 10 units on each floor would make it ~5 stories.... The .pdf of the proposal is too blurry to see & Warner James doesn't have a real website so I don't know how tall it will really be.

#19 amor de cosmos

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Posted 28 September 2008 - 08:59 PM

I heard that the 12-storey-tower plan was shot down because the neighbours compained that the people living in them would be able to see into their yards. I liked the idea of taller, narrower buildings with more green space, and whose shadows would move across the ground during the day. Now (not suprisingly) it sounds like there will be shorter, wider buildings that bock out the sun, and less green space.

#20 Mike K.

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Posted 29 September 2008 - 05:18 AM

Won't people still see into neighbouring backyards from lowrise buildings?

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