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APPROVED
Unity Commons
Uses: rental, commercial
Address: 1303 Fairfield Road
Municipality: Victoria
Region: Urban core
Storeys: 4
Unity Commons is a mixed-use, four-storey, 15-unit rental and ground floor commercial development in the City ... (view full profile)
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[Fairfield] Unity Commons (Fairfield United Church) | Rentals, commercial | Approved


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#21 Bingo

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Posted 21 August 2016 - 01:50 PM

If a 6-story building could make it feasible to preserve/restore some or all of the old building then this option should be on the table.

 

I'm all for seeing the recycled bricks sold to donors whose name will appear on a plaque in the memorial garden.


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#22 mbjj

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Posted 22 August 2016 - 07:21 AM

My 3 x great grandfather was the last person buried under the church floor in a small church in Wales. We wanted to go and see the plaque but when we got there, we discovered someone was living in the church and there was no chance at all of even getting a peek inside. It was a shame and rather a disappointment. Hope his ghost keeps things lively.



#23 aastra

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Posted 22 August 2016 - 08:44 AM

 

I'm all for seeing the recycled bricks sold to donors whose name will appear on a plaque in the memorial garden.

 

Unfortunately that's about as good as preservation gets in Victoria. I suppose they could really go overboard and staple a picture of the former building to a telephone pole. But how much would that cost?


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#24 Mike K.

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Posted 23 August 2016 - 01:57 PM

Some more details regarding the church redevelopment project.

Fairfield-United-Church-redevelopment.jpg

Rental apartments to replace Fairfield United Church
http://victoria.citi...-united-church/

A proposal to redevelop the Fairfield United Church property at 1303 Fairfield Road is making its way through the community consultation process.

Victoria-based JN Development Group (JNDG) acquired the parcel earlier this year with the goal of redeveloping the land into rental apartments and ground floor commercial space – a portion of which will be designated for use by Fairfield United.

Reverend Beth Walker, one of two pastors based at the church, says the time had come for the congregation to divest itself of the 90-year-old asset.

“This church was built like a big house and not like a cathedral, and it just hasn’t held up as well as a smaller building would have or one built with different construction materials and techniques. It’s not seismically safe, and quite honestly the majority of the space remains unused at this time. So as you can imagine any restoration work would have been very expensive to undertake,” Walker said. [Full article]

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#25 Kapten Kapsell

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Posted 23 August 2016 - 02:51 PM

It looks like Mike K got a scoop that even the Times Colonist couldn't get!

I could easily see the coffee shop space going to Discovery or 2% Jazz, which aren't represented in Cook Street Village (Fantastico Coffee is carried at Cottage Bakery near Moss/Fairfield).

 

Even though massing hasn't been decided, I suppose that overall height would need to be 4 storeys to accommodate 20+ rental units?



#26 Mike K.

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Posted 23 August 2016 - 03:04 PM

I'm going to put my money on three-storeys as optimal from the neighbourhood perspective and four-storeys for the developer.

We also need to take into consideration that the rental market is going to be hit with challenges as construction costs start to creep higher and higher. They're going to need more density to make these projects viable.
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#27 Nparker

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Posted 23 August 2016 - 03:05 PM

...I suppose that over all height would need to be 4 storeys to accommodate 20+ rental units?

Which is probably not a great deal taller than the top of the existing church building, but I predict the "it's too tall" crowd to come out in full force against anything over 3 floors.

Capture.JPG



#28 Vanessa Hammond

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Posted 24 August 2016 - 07:57 AM

WE, the congregation of Fairfield United Church, are just like a family that has been living in a house with problems (furnace problems, leaky roof, etc) so we need to be in a space that does not have these problems but meets our current needs.   So, just like a family, we have sold the structure but been very fortunate in being able to work with the buyer so that the site will provide much needed rental housing, a new space for us and, we hope, a cafe.  We feel just like a family moving out temporarily during renovations and looking forward to coming back in to a purpose designed, new sacred space in which we can continue our mission of being the Spirited Heart of Fairfield..


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#29 Mike K.

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Posted 24 August 2016 - 09:23 AM

Fantastic stuff, Vanessa. You're in good hands with JN and I'm sure the project will be a success for all involved.


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#30 Kapten Kapsell

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Posted 22 September 2016 - 01:01 PM

Any updates from JN Development group on this, such as renderings...?



#31 Mike K.

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Posted 23 September 2016 - 09:43 AM

It might be a little while before we have a defined concept in place.

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#32 Kapten Kapsell

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Posted 27 November 2016 - 07:18 PM

Mods: the name of this development is Unity.

The church has posted a few audio clips (interviews and conversations) here: http://fairfieldunit...ability-update/

#33 Kapten Kapsell

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Posted 27 November 2016 - 07:25 PM

As noted in the link, local architect Christopher Rowe is the architect of record for this project.

#34 nerka

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Posted 02 December 2016 - 11:45 AM

Fairfield United Church Redevelopment

December 19th, 7pm, Garry Oak Room, 1335 Thurlow Road

A development proposal for the Fairfield United Church property at 1303 Fairfield Rd. is coming forward to the FGCA’s Land Use Committee on December 19th. All are welcome to come and provide comment at this public meeting, which is one of the first steps in a rezoning application. Draft plans are available here. Please note an additional proposal for 1417 May Street will be first on the agenda, this proposal will be second.



#35 nerka

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Posted 02 December 2016 - 11:50 AM

Four stories in height according to the draft plans.

 

I don't totally love the look of the building, but I don't see a lot substantive to object to.  The south and east neighbours aren't going to love balconies looming over their yards. I wonder if a couple of balconies could be moved around to the west side to overlook the street.

 

What do people think?



#36 Kapten Kapsell

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Posted 02 December 2016 - 11:56 AM

I like the proposal.

Perhaps there are no west-facing balconies due to noise concerns for the church (since the church will be primarily oriented to the west)?

#37 aastra

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Posted 02 December 2016 - 12:00 PM

I'd say it's about as wrong as it could be. Almost exactly what I didn't want to see there. It looks suburban and it seems to be trying way too hard (as often seems to be the case when we're talking about new developments in the older neighbourhoods).

 

I was hoping for something that seemed to be of the same extended family as the existing building and the other old buildings across the street.


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#38 Nparker

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Posted 02 December 2016 - 12:00 PM

...What do people think?

I can't say I am wowed by the aesthetics. I think something more traditional (dare I say with some red brick) might look better at this location. I find the angled portion at the intersection to be the least appealing aspect.

5 corners @ Fairfield & Moss.JPG

The overall massing seems fine to me.



#39 Nparker

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Posted 02 December 2016 - 12:07 PM

Here are the proposed exterior finishes.

legend.JPG

The "red" is stucco, which seems out of place in the context of this location.



#40 aastra

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Posted 02 December 2016 - 12:12 PM

Sorry if that seems harsh, but we're taking a distinctive old building that has some honest-to-goodness identity and presence and replacing it with a quirkified box that could have come from Langford or Sidney or anywhere. I ask you, what about this proposal has anything to do with this particular corner or this particular part of town?


Edited by aastra, 02 December 2016 - 12:12 PM.

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