Project leaders for The Vortex tourist accommodation and restaurant project on Fulford Harbour received the indication of support they needed from the Salt Spring Local Trust Committee last week, with a successful application to allow three variances in the development guidelines.
Property developer David Fullbrook came to the Dec. 17 committee meeting armed with legal counsel, who asked the LTC to give an idea whether there was general support for the project, or if Fullbrook should abandon plans before any more money was spent.
“I think if you get this decision today, that will be a positive message,” said LTC chair Peter Luckham.
The project will bring 17 guest accommodation units in single cabins and duplexes as well as a restaurant to the site of the former Fulford Inn. A staff report showed that many concessions have been made since the application was first considered in August. The original plan would have required four or five additional variances, falling so far out of the development guidelines that staff felt a rezoning application would be more appropriate.
By removing proposed features such as a viewing platform over Fulford Creek and expanded retail space, the applicant reduced the hurdles to just the interior lot-line setbacks, sewage tank placement and septic field placement. The latter item proved the only real issue for trustees because the area would be closer than 30 metres to Soule Creek. They agreed to trust the professional recommendation on the field siting, but also voted to require annual septic monitoring for the first five years of operation.