A performing arts and cultural centre for Langley is one of 26 recommendations in the new Key Directions Report, a summary of findings from the initial round of public meeting to help decide what a future City will look like.
“We want to create an iconic building to transform our downtown,” City CAO Francis Cheung told the Langley Advance Times, “to support, foster and protect the arts.”
Published in June, Key Directions was the product than 1,000 “interactions” with the public and community organizations that included an online survey, a housing forms workshop, an open house, and stakeholder working sessions.
It also calls for leveraging rapid transit by allowing bigger buildings with mixed uses near the expected future SkyTrain line from Surrey and establishing an “Innovation Boulevard” connecting the downtown core to Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) “to encourage tech businesses, start-ups, and maker spaces.”
“They’re (KPU) a major education institution,” Cheung observed.
“We’d like to find some synergy with them.”
Carl Johannsen, City director of development services, noted that the findings also support what he described as “gentle densification” south of the Nicomekl River, including smaller lot single family homes, garden suites and townhomes and multi-plexes, as well as support for small-scale neighbourhood commercial nodes and public amenities such as green spaces.
Next comes translating those proposals into into specific policies and regulations, by drafting a new Official Community Plan and zoning bylaws, then more consultation, likely this fall.
“We’ll go back to the cubic for an open house,” Cheung said.
No date has been set for the open house yet, and Cheung noted the shape of the consultation may have to be different, due to COVID-19 restrictions that limit the size of public gatherings.
Even if Skytrain’s arrival is held up, the plan will still meet the needs of commuters using express bus services, Cheung said.