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Legislation introduced to deliver more homes near transit hubs

November 8, 2023 at 2:13 pm  BC, News, Politics, Provincial

Meghan Lahti, mayor, City of Port Moody –

“The creation of walkable, connected neighbourhoods in proximity to transit is a priority for Port Moody council and this direction from the Province will assist in achieving this goal. With this said, we hope that municipalities will retain the ability to approve proposals based on their existing policy frameworks with respect to climate resilience, increasing access to jobs and services, affordable housing options and urban design considerations to name a few.”

Tom Dyas, mayor, City of Kelowna –

“Positioning housing density proximate to accessible transit is smart planning and good policy. It’s why, for example, our recent OCP update in Kelowna was developed in tandem with our transportation master plan. Residents need diverse and affordable housing options that also make it easy to get to work, school and appointments. We look forward to continued collaboration with the Province to ensure there are investments in transit infrastructure that will support the housing objectives needed in our growing communities.”

Ken Sim, mayor, City of Vancouver –

“Investing in homes near transit hubs aligns with our shared vision for a sustainable future. We appreciate the Province moving forward with legislation that seeks to enable more housing and we look forward to working with the Province to implement these new regulations in a thoughtful way. Make no mistake, our goal is to deliver more housing faster and we look forward to understanding the opportunities and impacts of this new legislation.”

Jill Atkey, CEO, BC Non-Profit Housing Association –

“This legislation has the potential to unlock new sites for affordable housing development by reducing time and approval barriers for non-profit housing providers. Allowing non-profit housing developers to determine parking minimums on new developments based on the actual needs of their tenants will reduce costs and, ultimately, rents.”

Anne McMullin, president and CEO, Urban Development Institute (UDI) —

“We see this legislation as a pivotal turning point with the potential to significantly accelerate the pace of home construction in areas where growth is most needed and can be best accommodated. For years, the UDI has advocated for maximizing the billions of dollars of investments made by senior governments in our rapid transit system. Transit-oriented development will help us achieve other societal objectives: streamlined and more affordable commuting between work, home and other destinations; decreased greenhouse gas emissions; and the cultivation of vibrant and healthier communities as people can walk or cycle to meet their daily needs.”

Mike Moffatt, founding director, the PLACE Centre –

“Outdated zoning rules and parking minimums increase the costs and reduce the number of homes that can be built, driving up rents and home prices for families. With this legislation, which will make transit-oriented development a reality, British Columbia has created a best-in-Canada model for other provinces to emulate.”

Rory Kulmala, CEO, Vancouver Island Construction Association –

“We welcome any initiatives that look to reduce red tape and to accelerate increasing housing development on Vancouver Island, particularly around transit-oriented hubs and multi-modal transportation corridors. In doing so, it reduces congestion, promotes sustainability and enhances accessibility for all, while fostering healthier and more connected communities, while creating a more efficient, equitable and vibrant urban environment.”

Peter Edgar, CEO, Edgar Development –

“It’s time to make it easier to build complete, transit-oriented communities and create the types of livable cities that people want to be part of. The time and cost associated with getting multi-unit housing near transit approved and built is prohibitively long. Making it faster to build mixed-use, higher-density communities within walking distance of transit is going to create the kind of sustainable, diverse housing options Vancouver so desperately needs.”

Dak Molnar, managing director, Molnar Group –

“The way it’s set up now, the rezoning process to build multi-unit rental buildings around transit often takes years, even with city councils on board. This legislation will help speed up the process so developers can add the much-needed types of housing and desirable commercial and community amenities that people are looking for, within walking distance from transit.”

Owen Brady, director, Abundant Housing Vancouver –

“Legalizing apartments around our public-transit investments will improve affordability and support sustainable planning. More housing near rapid transit means more people will be able to live here without a car. Many-decades-old SkyTrain stations are still surrounded by single-family homes, but it is important for B.C.’s economy, the environment and affordability that we use the land around our multi-billion-dollar public-transit investments intensively and equitably.”

Tom Green, senior climate policy adviser, David Suzuki Foundation –

“We are very encouraged that in addition to much needed housing, transit-oriented development will lead to complete, vibrant communities. Increasing the housing around transit stations will mean easier access to transit to encourage use, opening the door for more people to live a lower-carbon, sustainable lifestyle.”

Shaun St-Amour, vice-president of operations, Clay Construction Inc. –

“By allowing more homes to be built around transit hubs, British Columbians will have more affordable living options. Transportation and buildings play a major role in tackling our climate emergency, so today’s alignment of policies creates the necessary synergies for better buildings, sustainable and efficient transportation, and diverse and vibrant communities.”

Rick Jeffery, president and CEO, Canadian Wood Council –

“We applaud the B.C. government’s new legislation to expedite higher-density housing near transit hubs in communities across the province. British Columbia’s ongoing excellence in the global production of high-quality lumber and engineered wood products remains pivotal in advancing sustainable housing. Its versatility, affordability and environmentally low-carbon properties are distinguishing factors in shaping the future of eco-friendly construction. It’s not just about building homes; it’s about building communities that enrich people’s lives with convenience and sustainability.”

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