Developer Chris Le Fevre hopes to bring a tiny house community to Ucluelet. (Image from May 22 Ucluelet Council Agenda)

Developer proposes village of tiny homes in Ucluelet

Ukee’s council talked tiny homes, a potential museum, Spring Cleanup Day’s mess and community forest.

A tiny home community could be coming to Ucluelet.

During their regular meeting on May 22, Ucluelet’s municipal council reviewed correspondence from developer Chris Le Fevre outlining a project Le Fevre believes could help solve Ucluelet’s troubling lack of rental housing.

“Resurgent economic growth on the Esowista Peninsula has occurred in recent years but fixed-roof accommodation available for the workforce to be adequately housed has unfortunately been grossly inadequate and is now at the point of crisis with no available inventory,” Le Fevre wrote in a report to council.

His correspondence suggests his company is in talks with Weyerhauser to purchase a currently vacant lot on Marine Drive and that he has obtained a ‘letter of intent’ from the company for a potential sale.

“The site currently has no buildings on it and has been used by the forestry industry with drainage channels constructed together with a ‘forestry road’ to the south end of the site,” the report states.

“The proposal by LeFevre & Company and Weyerhauser is to provide a Tiny House development in the form of affordable housing for rent on site.”

Le Fevre’s proposal suggests roughly 24 tiny homes could fit per acre of land.

“The Tiny House movement is a general description for an architectural and social approach that advocates living simply, in small houses, and at lower costs,” the report states.

After reviewing Le Fevre’s correspondence, council agreed to direct their staff to work with Le Fevre on the proposal.

Historical Society pursuing museum

The Ucluelet and Area Historical Society is seeking out land for a potential museum in Ucluelet.

Coun. Marilyn McEwen said she attended the society’s May 14 meeting and learned the society is seeking compensation from the district for land they say was earmarked for the society but was relinquished to the Wild Pacific Trail Society to create a parking lot on Coast Guard Road.

“When the Wild Pacific Trail lot was built, it actually used part of the land that was in reserve for a museum and they’re looking for a letter acknowledging that they will indeed get something in return for relinquishing that land,” McEwen said.

McEwen made a motion to direct staff to “respond to the historical society with a letter acknowledging that they relinquished property that was slated to be the museum on Coast Guard Road when the Wild Pacific Trail parking lot was built and that they were indeed promised an alternate location for a museum.”

Coun. Randy Oliwa suggested district staff should investigate the historical archives of the situation and present a report to council before such a letter is sent and Coun. Sally Mole agreed expressing concern about whether an official “paper trail” exists outlining the alleged promise made to the society.

She added if no documentation can be found, council should meet with the society.

“I know they have a little angst on what’s going on,” she said. “If there was any conversation or promise made to find an alternate location for the museum, I’m hoping that would be in the report from staff just so that we’re all clear and we can move on with the historical society.”

Council agreed to direct staff to investigate any agreements made between the district and the society when the trail’s parking lot was built.

“I’m sure staff will be able to get to the bottom of it and see where everything sits,” said mayor Dianne St. Jacques.

Spring Clean-Up creates eyesore

Ucluelet will be more careful about scheduling its annual Spring Clean-Up Day in the future after concerns raised by Tourism Ucluelet over how the town looks when tourists are in town.

Residents carried unwanted items to the curb to be picked up for disposal on May 26 and Coun. Marilyn McEwen suggested the unwanted debris made the town look unappealing during the Porsche Club of America Vancouver Island Chapter’s annual visit to Ucluelet over the weekend.

“It doesn’t leave a very good impression of the town for these Porsche drivers,” McEwen said.

Council agreed to ask their staff to make sure future Spring Clean-Up Days do not coincide with any tourism-related events in the future.

Community Forest seeks new voices

The Barkley Community Forest Corporation is seeking out potential new board members.

The corporation is currently looking for two directors to help shape the future of the site.

The forest brought in over $1 million in revenue last year, which was split between its partners the Toquaht First Nation and Ucluelet. In addition to the current forestry operations, the partners are hoping to create tourism and recreational opportunities at the forest site, located near Maggie Lake.

“We’re looking for somebody that’s got enthusiasm for the community forest and not only forestry but recreation and all the other things that can happen out there,” she said. “It doesn’t have to be somebody with a specific forestry background or anything like that, but just somebody that’s got a vision and can see the potential of the land and how to make it happen along with the business of harvesting.”

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