Proposed commercial core up for discussion

Commercial developments proposed for the UBC campus will get a public airing at two meetings scheduled to take place at the Asian Centre on Nov. 25.

In total, eight areas identified by the Official Community Plan -- a legal document adopted by UBC in 1997 to guide the university's institutional and non-institutional land developments -- will be reviewed at the meetings.

Among the proposals to be discussed is a pedestrian-oriented commercial centre at University Boulevard and East Mall near the bus loop, says Paul Young, director of development for UBC Properties Trust, which advises the university on commercial land developments.

Young says the development being suggested will be mostly retail space with some residential units possible, aimed at students, staff and faculty.

"It's all part of how we can create a more active and lively campus," Young says. "We would like to encourage more shopping and relaxing on campus -- all things that at this point are being done mostly off campus."

Young adds that the projects being unveiled at the public sessions are part of developments that will span the next 35 years and would require UBC Board of Governors and Greater Vancouver Regional District approval before breaking ground.

The meetings will be held in two sessions: 12:30 to 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Asian Centre.