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1,450 new homes, 4 towers planned in Burnaby's Brentwood — and a rail overpass

Four towers between 35 and 42 storeys are proposed for Brentwood Town Centre in Burnaby, along with a multi-use pedestrian and bike overpass above the CN/BNR rail line.

Another Brentwood Town Centre development with four new highrise towers and more than 1,450 new homes is up at council.

The Emerald Place development, by Polygon Development 366 Ltd., would be located on a site made up of two lots at 2300 Madison Ave. and a BC Hydro right-of-way.

On-site is currently an older industrial warehouse building, according to a staff report.

The development would be made up of four highrise residential towers ranging from 35 to 42 storeys and six-storey non-market rental building. The development would be built over four phases.

There is a total of 1,260 strata condo units and 201 non-market rental units proposed.

When the plan first appeared at council on April 24, there were no three-bedroom rental units included.

Burnaby Citizens Association councillors Alison Gu and Daniel Tetrault pointed out the lack of three-bedrooms in the non-market part. Gu said she was “perplexed” by the lack of family-friendly housing and both councillors questioned the lack of three-bedroom rental units within a 15-minute walk of a school.

“I don’t think this sends a clear family-friendly message that we think that we should be supporting families of all income levels to be able to achieve reasonable housing,” Gu said at council.

Planning general manager Ed Kozak said larger units would be focused in areas even closer to schools in Brentwood.

But Emerald Place developer Polygon heard the councillors’ concerns.

The developer re-arranged their architectural plans to include eight three-bedroom non-market rental units before the public hearing on May 30.

Pedestrian railway crossing

The development also proposes a multi-use pedestrian and cycling overpass across the CN/BNR rail line at Alaska Street.

The overpass would “provide connectivity within the trail network along the southern edge of the Brentwood Town Centre and to facilitate connection to the Central Valley Greenway to the south,” according to the report.

The overpass at Alaska requires a “minor amendment” to the 1996 Brentwood Town Centre development plan, which did not identify a crossing at Alaska.

Potential crossings identified in the Brentwood Town Centre development plan were: Gilmore Avenue, Madison Avenue, Willingdon Avenue, Westminster Avenue (no longer available), Douglas Road and Holdom Avenue.

The city has been collecting contributions from developers in Brentwood for the overpass, according to the report.

The Emerald Place development is also planned to include various amenities like fitness centres, meeting rooms, kids’ play areas, wellness spas, work lounges and kitchen spaces, as well as a landscaped rooftop with dog runs, kids’ play areas and garden plots for urban agriculture.

More than 1,460 vehicle parking spaces are planned.