Victoria City Council approves inclusionary housing policy

After years of back and forth, the policy will be ratified in two weeks

Victoria City Council has approved an inclusionary housing policy for the city. Now, new developments with at least 60 units in total must ensure that 20 per cent of the units are affordable.

“This policy has been in the works for a long time — years, in fact,” said Victoria City Councillor Jeremy Loveday.

“We’re in the midst of a housing crisis and a development boom,” he said. “This policy seeks to make sure that the real estate development that is occurring works better for the many residents that are not able to currently afford that housing that’s being built.”

READ ALSO: Average housing prices would have to drop by $413,000 for Victoria to become affordable

A vote was taken at their Committee of the Whole meeting on Thursday. There were a few councillors against the policy, but the objectors were out voted, said Loveday.

“The average residents are going to benefit most from this policy because it’s going to make sure that the buildings that we have going up all across the city will have units that people can actually afford,” said Loveday. “That will be in the form of both affordable rental housing and affordable home ownership opportunities.”

The affordable home ownership aspect of the policy will be managed by either the CRD or BC Housing, not by the city, he said. However, the city will monitor this to ensure the inclusionary housing policy is creating as many affordable housing opportunities as possible.

READ ALSO: Vancouver Island residents say municipalities are not moving fast enough on affordable housing

The rentals that will be affected by this policy may either be managed by non-profits, by the CRD or an entirely different entity, said Loveday. “But they will need to maintain the affordability for the 60-year period or for the life of the building.”

Buildings with fewer than 60 units will have an option to give cash rather than making 20 per cent of their units affordable, Loveday explained. This cash will go to the city to be managed.

“Seventy per cent of it will go to our affordable housing trust fund,” said Loveday. “We give $10,000 per bedroom to affordable housing being developed within the city and often that money is able to be leveraged greatly to other levels of government so it actually helps us create more housing overall. The other 30 per cent goes to neighbourhood amenities.”

The inclusionary housing policy will be ratified at council in two weeks and will go into effect immediately after it is approved, said Loveday. It will apply only to new rezoning applications received by the city.



devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

affordable housingBC HousingHousingHousing crisisHousing Markethousing plansupportive housing

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

One dead as fish boat sinks off southern Vancouver Island

Shawnigan Lake-registered Arctic Fox II went down off Cape Flattery, west of Victoria

Saanich council seeks more information after hearing Uptown-Douglas plan

Council asks for further reports on economic, housing, transportation plans for corridor

Three active COVID-19 cases on Vancouver Island

Since July 24, Central island has had five new cases, North one, South none

Victoria police seize replica handgun and bullets

Unrelated call leads police to functional replica

Flaming object thrown through Victoria restaurant window

Police looking for any witnesses to early-morning incident

Man, 54, charged in connection with fatal attack of Red Deer doctor

Doctor was killed in his walk-in clinic on Monday

Landlord takes front door, windows after single B.C. mom late with rent

Maple Ridge mom gets help from community generosity and government

42 more people test positive for COVID-19 in B.C.

The province has recorded no new deaths in recent days

Joe Biden selects California Sen. Kamala Harris as running mate

Harris and Biden plan to deliver remarks Wednesday in Wilmington

Lawsuit launched after Florida child handcuffed, booked and briefly jailed

Suit alleges “deliberate indifference” to what should have been handled as a behavioural issue

Russia approves vaccine, Putin hopes to begin mass production

Critic calls decision to proceed without thorough testing ‘dangerous and grossly immoral’

Doctor slain in Alberta medical clinic was devoted father, husband

Red Deer doctors on edge after attack on colleague who had two young daughters

Feds offer ‘life preserver’ funds to BC Ferries as pandemic sinks revenue

For every dollar the province spends the federal government will match

Most Read