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District of North Van bought this Lower Capilano lot for $9.1 million

The district envisions the land being put to use as a 'crossroads' into the burgeoning neighbourhood.

The District of North Vancouver has put $9.1 million on the barrel for a chunk of property in the emerging Lions Gate Village neighbourhood that will soon be converted into a “crossroads” for the burgeoning neighbourhood.

District council released a previously in-camera (behind closed doors) decision Monday, confirming the purchase of 1801 Capilano Rd., a vacant lot of 1,870 square metres or about 20,000 square feet.

The district has long intended to make use of the commercial-zoned property “to improve access to Lions Gate Village Centre, providing a visual and physical gateway to the Village Plaza from Capilano Road,” district spokesperson Courtenay Rannard said in a written statement. “The crossroads will extend Hope Road across Capilano Road, which will improve safety for those travelling in and out of the area, with a focus on pedestrians and active transportation.”

The most recent property assessment for the land came out at $8.739 million. The owner who sold the land to the district had only owned it since March 2021, when they paid $7.25 million, records show.

What will happen with the remainder of the property after the district’s crossroads project is completed hasn’t been decided yet, but options that staff are assessing include selling it, adding mixed-use development or social and supportive housing. Decisions on the future use of the property rests with council.

Recently, 1801 Capilano Rd. has been used as a parking lot for construction workers in the area, but the property has been otherwise unused for decades. From 1968 to 2000, it was the site of an Esso station.

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