The proposed development would be located to the immediate northeast of Sevenoaks Shopping Centre.

The proposed development would be located to the immediate northeast of Sevenoaks Shopping Centre.

PHOTOS: Images reveal size of huge development proposed for central Abbotsford

Developer hopes to see project go before council this summer, but says COVID-19 has slowed process

Images published online by a Vancouver architectural firm show the scale of a massive high-rise development proposed for the north side of South Fraser Way.

Emco Investments wants to build four high-rises and several smaller buildings as part of what an application called “a mixed use, multi-tenured seniors apartment and commercial village.”

The project, if built as planned, would have more than one million square feet of floor space and as many as 800 housing units.

The land includes several parcels just east of Bourquin Crescent. One parcel is currently occupied by a Red Robin restaurant; others are currently home to several residential properties. The site does not include the McDonald’s at the corner of Bourquin and South Fraser Way.

Images (see below) from Vancouver architectural firm Iredale Architecture show the largest of the buildings – a 20-storey tower – closest to the intersection of Bourquin and South Fraser Way. Three other towers would be spread further back on the property, alongside several smaller apartment buildings. More than 1,500 parking spots would be built underground, the developer says.

The application first went before city hall staff in the fall of 2017. The submission of a development application is usually followed by a review process, during which city staff works with the developer to find ways to enhance the surrounding area, add amenities for residents, and mitigate a project’s effect on surrounding properties.

FROM 2018: Four high-rises part of massive Abbotsford senior’s housing proposal

Fred Strumpski, who runs Emco Developments, told The News that the process had been expected to go before council during the first half of 2020. But the arrival of COVID-19 seems to have brought things to a halt.

“Everything is in a flux,” he said. “We don’t know what is going to happen in the near-term.”

Strumpski wasn’t critical of the city or politicians, saying “we have a good mayor, but he has no control over the virus.” He said he hopes to see the project reach the council table for a decision in the coming months.

But the uncertainty of the current situation has Strumpski, who is in his late 70s and previously applied to develop the site in 2006, wondering if he will see his vision ever realized.

“If things are going the way they’re going, it may not happen in my life,” he wryly said.

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Emco Developments wants to build several high-rises on the north side of South Fraser Way, near Sevenoaks Shopping Centre.                                Images via Iredale Architecture/iredale.ca

Emco Developments wants to build several high-rises on the north side of South Fraser Way, near Sevenoaks Shopping Centre. Images via Iredale Architecture/iredale.ca

Emco Developments wants to build several high-rises on the north side of South Fraser Way, near Sevenoaks Shopping Centre.                                Images via Iredale Architecture/iredale.ca

Emco Developments wants to build several high-rises on the north side of South Fraser Way, near Sevenoaks Shopping Centre. Images via Iredale Architecture/iredale.ca

Emco Developments wants to build several high-rises on the north side of South Fraser Way, near Sevenoaks Shopping Centre.                                Images via Iredale Architecture/iredale.ca

Emco Developments wants to build several high-rises on the north side of South Fraser Way, near Sevenoaks Shopping Centre. Images via Iredale Architecture/iredale.ca

Emco Developments wants to build several high-rises on the north side of South Fraser Way, near Sevenoaks Shopping Centre.                                Images via Iredale Architecture/iredale.ca

Emco Developments wants to build several high-rises on the north side of South Fraser Way, near Sevenoaks Shopping Centre. Images via Iredale Architecture/iredale.ca

Emco Developments wants to build several high-rises on the north side of South Fraser Way, near Sevenoaks Shopping Centre.                                 Images via Iredale Architecture/iredale.ca

Emco Developments wants to build several high-rises on the north side of South Fraser Way, near Sevenoaks Shopping Centre. Images via Iredale Architecture/iredale.ca