Colwood’s only hotel and a new rental apartment project are under construction at the Wansbrough family’s multi-use $32-million Westridge Landing development at Wale and Wilfert roads.
Westridge’s 63-unit Legacy rental property is to be ready in April and the adjacent 80-room Holiday Inn Express is scheduled to be finished in July. Construction started on both projects in December.
This is a prime spot for a new West Shore hotel, says tourism consultant Frank Bourree, of Chemistry Consulting, who did a project feasibility study.
“It is a fantastic location,” Bourree said Thursday. “There is a shortage of rooms out there. The market is showing some real recovery.”
Many visiting sport teams playing in Langford stay in Royal Oak or on Gorge Road because of a lack of closer accommodation, Bourree said.
“They definitely need that infrastructure for sport tourism.”
Colwood Mayor Carol Hamilton agrees, saying rooms are needed for events such as hockey, curling, soccer and swim meets at nearby Juan de Fuca Recreation Centre.
“This is going to be a real enhancement for that local area … and drive some tourism in our direction,” she said.
Lloyd Wansbrough, vice-president of construction for Metropolitan Capital Partners, the Westridge development firm, said that, as well as sports tourism, the hotel will serve Royal Roads University, the Rock the Shores music festival, the West Shore business community, and Victoria General Hospital.
The hotel will have five-above-ground levels, totalling about 50,000 square feet, he said. The ground floor will have 3,000 square feet of commercial space, still to be leased, and a 7,000-square-foot lobby.
The Legacy rental building, also with five above-ground levels, will include slightly more than 70,000 square feet, Wansbrough said.
The ground floor level of 14,500 square feet will include a restaurant. The remaining 10,000 square feet is available for lease for a variety of uses including commercial, retail and office.
“We’ve been on this property for 38 years and we see that Colwood needs rental properties,” he said. The family plans to hold on to its previously undeveloped property for the long term.
Some Legacy suites will be furnished and geared toward visiting Royal Roads students and families, who may stay for two to three months.
Interest is strong in the units, with 25 already spoken for, including its three, three-bedroom units, he said. So far, about 75 per cent of committed tenants are 55 years old and older, but the building is aimed at a wide demographic.
Suites have either one, two or three bedrooms, he said. Rents range from $900 to $1,700 per month. Units start at 532 square feet and go up to 1,124 square feet. Some larger units have “lock-off” suites, meaning part of a suite can be divided to create a private entrance and space for visitors.
Features include a roof-top deck with a barbecue area and underground parking.
A Colwood Farmers Market is planned next to the hotel, Wansbrough said.
Some capital region developments collapsed in recent years, particularly in the wake of the 2008 recession. Among them is the partly finished Capital City Centre, a multi-use development at Colwood Corners.
Westridge Landing has been rolled out in stages over several years. It is now in its final stages of build-out. Wansbrough estimates that $32 million will have been spent in total once construction is complete.
The site encompasses several buildings including a 32,000-square-feet project that opened in 2009 as home to Lee Valley, a woodworking, gardening and cabinet hardware retailer. Other site tenants include Dad’s Homemade Soups and Sangys, Eagle Rise Animal Hospital, Greenhouse Creations, Goodview Family Restaurant, Pacific Coast Floor Coverings, ServiceMaster, The Sign Pad, Strength In 2 Fitness, Westshore Dance Studios and 7-Eleven.