Sonja Trauss (left) and Adrian Cook will be speaking at Tuesday night’s Yes in My Back Yard event. (File contributed/ Urban Development Institute)

YIMBY: Yes, in My Back Yard discussions held in downtown Victoria

Housing density advocates to explore different solutions to affordable housing

Housing developments are popping up across the capital region, but whether you’re for them or against them it may be good to attend an upcoming housing density strategies discussion in downtown Victoria.

YIMBY Victoria: Yes, in My Back Yard is taking place at the KWENCH venue at 2031 Store St. on Tuesday from 5 to 7 p.m.

Housing density advocates Sonja Trauss and Adrian Cook will be presenting at the solutions-oriented discussion, which hopes to address the key barriers standing in the way of creating new housing.

Trauss is from California and is the founder of the San Francisco Bay Area Renters Federation. In 2016 she co-founded the YIMBY Party, which has over 30 affiliate clubs all over the United States. Trauss says that across the borders, the problems are the same.

“Millennials everywhere are facing housing shortages,” she said. “We have similar systems with planning commissions, and decisions are made locally. But people need to pay attention to what’s happening locally… My message is that renters need to get involved.”

ALSO READ: New report finds many Sidney residents struggle with housing affordability

Adrian Cook is a single father of five who lives in downtown Vancouver and blogs about his experience. He’s also co-founded two non-profits; Abundant Housing Vancouver and Abundant Transit BC to advocate for better housing and transit options.

“I want to focus on how we can start advocacy groups in this market,” Cook said. “There’s nothing less rewarding than getting involved in these issues.”

Both Traus and Cook said that while local councils, like Vancouver and Victoria’s seem to be pretty progressive in the housing realm, many NIMBY (not in my back yard) voices slow down progress.

ALSO READ: NIMBYs everywhere fear trend in Victoria

“If you care, or really even if you don’t care all that much it’s important to get your message out there,” Trauss said.

Tickets are still available for $10 and can be purchased at the door.

For more information you can visit udicapitalregion.ca/events/yimby.

nicole.crescenzi@vicnews.com

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