Sylvan Lake councillors unanimously approved a development permit for construction of a second storey addition with interior and exterior renovations to the former Cobb’s grocery store.
The $960,000 conversion will provide space for offices and personal services suites, retail units and a restaurant with an outdoor patio.
The town’s Municipal Planning Commission had recommended council approve the proposal.
Council’s approval was needed because the project falls within the Waterfront Direct Control District.
Colleen Jensen, speaking on behalf of RiverCity Developments, said “we think this will be exciting, not only for us, but for the community as a whole, particularly in the downtown area.” They’ve already had interest from businesses, some of them already in town who are looking to move downtown.
She said they plan to begin work immediately and it should take six to eight months to complete construction. “This will move forward very quickly.”
Councillor Dale Plante questioned if there was enough parking available. Planner Patty Urban said the project meets the town’s requirements. The Pattern Book specifies parking for office space is required however the developer is not required to provide parking for retail and personal use space. That’s permitted on the street.
Jensen again raised an issue with a requirement for landscape screening of the parking lot. “We want to ensure as much parking as possible is maintained.”
Mayor Susan Samson picked up on that comment and asked Urban about it. Urban said they’ll discuss the landscaping requirements with the developer to “see what variety of plans come up to meet the Pattern Book and buffering”.