IT seems the former Ridgeway Annex school is destined for residential redevelopment as the North Vancouver school board has narrowed down its options for the future of the site to proposals from two property developers.
The board announced its short list at Tuesday's meeting, eliminating proposals from a childcare operator and a third residential developer.
"We've gone from the short list down to two proponents based on those that have met the criteria and meet the values of what we are trying to achieve in the bigger picture in the school district in terms of values in the community and the school district and student needs," said board chairwoman Franci Stratton.
North Vancouver school district has three shuttered properties it is looking to divest either by sale or though long-term leases.
The board will now decide between Darwin Construction's proposal for nine residential lots and up to 27,000 square feet of new park space for the property and Anthem Properties' four potential development options that would have between 24 and 60 units of housing depending how densely they are arranged.
No matter what the school board's decision for the property on Ridgeway Avenue between Fifth and Sixth streets, the winning proponent will still have to go through a regular official community plan amendment process with the City of North Vancouver and the public will still be consulted as the board nears its decision, Stratton said.
Stratton could not specify what was in the Darwin and Anthem bids that outshined the bids from Kids Land Childcare Centre and Atti Group, other than it was not strictly financial.
As for childcare, which is always in short supply and being sought after by the city, the school district already has a large role in that, Stratton said. "We also have a lot of pre-and after-school daycare within the scope of our umbrella of early learning foundations. We are leasing within our schools and using our schools facility that way. There definitely is always a need for more daycare and preschool but this particular site isn't where we were looking for that opportunity."
The city has not contacted the school district about that opportunity, Stratton said.
Meanwhile, the Plymouth elementary site has proposals from two residential developers, a private school and Tsleil-Waututh Nation, which wants to convert the building to a skills-training centre. Keith Lynn elementary is being sought by the Transforming Education Society for reuse, and North Shore Studios for redevelopment.