Community members show strong interest in proposed waterfront development


Jeremy Deutsch, (COQUITLAM NOW) — It doesn’t appear changes to a massive development along the Fraser River in Coquitlam have dampened interest from residents and perspective buyers.

Dozens of residents from around the Tri-Cities turned out to an open house Wednesday night in Maillardville to see the changes proposed for the Fraser Mills development in Coquitlam.

About halfway through the three-hour open house, more than 100 people had already stopped by Place Maillardville Community Centre to see the new plans, including residents Steve and Lori Anweiler.

The Coquitlam couple live in a townhome in the area and are looking for a newer and larger space.

The couple said they’ve been following the progress of the development for a few years, and they like what they see.

“The street use, the plans and some of the pictures look very nice,” Steve told The NOW, drawing comparisons with the development to Newport Village in Port Moody.

The couple does have some concerns about traffic in the area, but they like the development’s proximity to transit and the rest of Metro Vancouver.

Port Coquitlam residents Clint and Jennifer Patzack are also looking to get into the housing market.

They suggested the project would liven up the area that is predominantly industrial.

“It’s waterfront property, I’m sure it’s going to be pretty nice,” Jennifer said, as the couple perused some of the designs at the open house.

The Patzack’s agree the development will be a positive addition to Coquitlam.

Jorgen Lyth and his wife have lived in the Maillardville area for 50 years.

They like the idea of developing the area, and are impressed there is public area planned for Fraser Mills.

“It been a long time coming and it should come,” Lyth said.

The couple said they might consider moving to Fraser Mills once they’re ready to downsize.

Situated along the Fraser River south of United Boulevard, the 89-acre Coquitlam development is expected to accommodate up to 3,700 units, 175,000 square feet of commercial space, 72,000 square feet of amenity space and more than 500,000 square feet of industrial space.

The open house was designed to give residents a chance to see proposed changes to the project by the developer, Beedie Development Group.

Those changes include more street-level open space by building underground parking, increasing the size of the main plaza, adding mid-rise buildings to the mix, and redesigning the pier.

Houtan Rafii, vice-president of residential development for Beedie, noted there have been no changes to the overall land use, density and building heights of the proposed site.

The changes still need to get final approval from Coquitlam city council.

“The project would liven up the area that is predominantly industrial.”