Victoria developer Chris Le Fevre purchased an empty parking lot in Port Alberni’s uptown and plans to create Woodwards Village, a housing development that will be an homage to a popular department store that once used the lot for parking. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)

Victoria developer Chris Le Fevre purchased an empty parking lot in Port Alberni’s uptown and plans to create Woodwards Village, a housing development that will be an homage to a popular department store that once used the lot for parking. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)

Victoria developer sees housing potential in Port Alberni’s south side

Chris Le Fevre plans to convert former Woodward’s parking lot into homes

A parking lot that has stood vacant for decades could soon be the site of a new housing development in South Port Alberni.

The area has caught the eye of Victoria developer Chris Le Fevre, whose work can be found in Tofino (Middle Beach Lodge), Mount Washington (the Beaufort Heights development and more) and throughout Victoria. He is particularly known for his award-winning heritage conversions in “old town” Victoria.

Le Fevre sees potential in Port Alberni.

“I’m at the stage in my career where I will only go and do business in places where I feel good, comfortable and where I feel I can make a contribution,” says Le Fevre. “I’ve been looking to invest in Port Alberni for some time.”

READ: PROGRESS 2021: Port Alberni faces unique challenges with housing

When the parking lot that was used for overflow for Woodward’s and then Zellers department stores, at the corner of Third Avenue and Mar Street, came up for sale, Le Fevre saw the opportunity.

“I like that area,” he says. “I see change, green spots appearing and I always like to work hard where there’s an underdog. I feel that change is already coming.”

Le Fevre has not approached city council with building plans yet—they are still under development. He said he envisions a mix of housing: single family dwellings, townhouses, smaller cottage dwellings, something architecturally compatible “with what Port Alberni is all about.” He estimates 40 or 50 homes.

“The housing I intend to build is not just a chosen few. It won’t be high-end housing, it will be as affordable as I can make it.

“I’m not your typical, broad base developer. I do interesting things; my time at Woodwards Village will be no different.”

Le Fevre expects to bring his plans to city council “in the next few months.”



susie.quinn@albernivalleynews.com

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Alberni-Clayoquot Regional DistrictHousingPort Alberni