Hotels, Winery, Supermarket: Taicheng Has Big Plans for Britannia Beach Property

An overview of area the Makin Land development. The developers are proposing 3,000 residential units, along with a raft of other commercial proposals.

By Gagandeep Ghuman
Published: Nov. 28, 2012

Three hotels, a winery, a supermarket, 3,000 residential units, schools, parks and light industry:

On Tuesday, Nov. 26, SLRD staff gave the board a glimpse into ambitious, but preliminary plans, for the Britannia Beach property also known as Makin lands.

Taicheng Development Corporation, a Chinese real estate firm, paid $31.5 million to buy the Makin lands in a court ordered sale this March.

Initially, Taicheng proposed a 4,000-unit residential development, but has now scaled it back to 3,000 units.

Taicheng is proposing that the majority of these residential units be multi‐family, including townhouses, stacked townhouses and apartments.

It’s proposing 86 single-family detached homes, nearly 1,800 townhomes, and 1330 apartments.

The appropriate building height is being decided, although Taicheng is seeking flexibility to allow buildings up to 18 storeys.

The proposed 3,000 residential units are 2,000 more units than what OCP currently supports.

SLRD has retained the services of an independent real estate market consultant to provide an objective opinion on market viability.

Taicheng is proposing up to approximately 200,000 sq. ft. of mostly retail commercial floor space, which includes a mixed use (residential over commercial) village core and waterfront commercial.

The plans include a medium‐size supermarket that Taicheng is proposing to build in an early phase of the development.

Taicheng is proposing up to three hotels on the site, two of which would be on the waterfront and one in the village core.

There are plans for a winery, which would produce and sell wine from grapes grown elsewhere.

Taicheng also wishes to set aside a few acres on the site for potential light industry use. Its plan is to seek “green” industrial businesses.

The developers also plan to add two more parcels of land to its South Britannia plan, adding 30 acres on which single family homes and townhomes are planned.

A major marina capable of accommodating vessels of various sizes, possibly including small cruise ships, is also being explored.

At a full build‐out of 3,000 residential units, the population in this development could range from 7,000 to 8,000 units.

Examples of some community facilities being proposed two community centres, a cultural centre, a fire hall, and civic office space.

Taicheng is also proposing a number of public parks as part of its development. Some of these park areas have been determined in some detail by Taicheng, such as a trail and park system spanning the entire waterfront of the property.

Taicheng is also dealing with water issues.

SLRD staff noted that there is water supply capacity for only 300 units, so in order to provide for 3,000 units, it will be critical for Taicheng to prove out their water supply system.

Editor’s NOTE: To read the full report on what Taicheng plans to do in Britannia Beach, pick up the free print edition of the Squamish Reporter on Friday.

The Squamish Reporter print edition will now be a FREE monthly magazine, with 5,000 copies distributed across town, in mailboxes, coffee shops, offices, etc.


  1. Stéphane Perron says:

    Sounds like a great initial proposal. This could be really good for our region. Hopefully Taicheng will follow through.

  2. Ron Fulber says:

    Furry Creek and Porteau had to do major highway upgrades before any lots were created. What makes this different? It would be good to see depelopment but not at any cost. An accessible Minaty Bay park and accessible foreshore will be great!

  3. Dave says:

    Oops. Now what will Squamish Down-towners say to this?…..Britannia Beach may get some convenience in their own backyard and not have to drive to Squamish to do their grocery shopping. But don’t hold your breath; the Makin lands have teased us before! Remember where they got their name from. The stock-market traders are , no doubt, poised.
    Cynicism is really an acute awareness of reality.

  4. Ryan Johnson says:

    A significant public access waterfront park with beach, playground, rope swing, water park, wash/change room facilities etc would be a great draw to this area.

  5. EM says:

    They really should realign the highway like it was always planned…
    Construction industry jobs there will give people in Squamish some spending money. It all helps, let’s just get it going sooner than later!

    • Stéphane Perron says:

      EM, please expand on the highway realignment. I was not aware there ever was talk of that. If it was suggested that the highway should be re-routed above the Makin lands, yes, I always thought that would be best for many reasons, except the cost.

  6. Dave says:

    Further to my above post and so there is no misunderstanding, I am fully in favour of the proposal and wish all parties well in this venture. Britannia Beach has a great potential but it is to be hoped that the waterfront will be enhanced in an eco-benefitting manner. Once any settlement is well established; and this village certainly is, it should be properly serviced. The inhabitants should not have to drive great distances to get their basic provisions. There are also other communities which will be involved such as Firry Creek and Porteau Cove.

  7. Nick Tattersfield says:

    Im glad some development is going ahead, I suspect water flow and quality will end up limiting the numbers of units.The foreshore and manaty bay are highly valuable as an added accessable recreational beach that the region is so short of.

  8. Baaboo says:

    The howes sound has just started to cure itself from one of the biggest ecological disaster in history (which is the old mine copper run off) Salmons and whales and many other sea creatures are coming back. I think the marina is a horrible idea. Also the traffic is already bad enough at the lions gate bridge, how is it gonna be when you have an extra 4000 people commuting! Anyway, i live in Britannia and i’m strongly against a project that big. i think developing is a good idea, but this is rediculous and it will fail…. Didn’t Furry creek had hotel plans and all??

  9. EWB says:

    18-storey buildings would ruin the view for all those new lots on the hillside overlooking the town… too bad for them.

  10. Ralph Fulber says:

    The community at Britannia is called Britannia Beach for a reason. Historically this was a water access only town site and mining community. In 1958 a road was pushed through from Lions Bay. With each successive upgrade of the road the community was more compromised in that access. The most recent upgrade to Highway 99 was completed to accommodate the Winter Olympics of 2010 and Britannia remained a two lane highway with the stated intention of bypassing the community when appropriate. Any further development within this community is going to have to address this problem of density and access well into the anticipated future demand. There can be no increase in the volume of traffic flowing through Britannia and compromising out waterfront access. Macdonald Devopment forfeited lands for a future alignment and the Taicheng group will need to do the same which as seen in Furry Creek and Porteau should mean we get our realigned highway sooner than later. It is not a matter of if bet when!