Vancouver to require more housing for families in new developments

Increasing family housing near parks and schools, and setting higher requirements for three bedroom homes in rezonings, are two of the new policies City staff are pursuing as part of efforts to increase housing for families in Vancouver.

“There is a clear need for more family housing in Vancouver, and City Hall is doing everything we can to make sure new housing is built that meets the needs of Vancouver families,” said Mayor Robertson. “Family housing is crucial for both the health of our neighbourhoods, as well as supporting our growing economy, so that we can attract and retain people who want to work in Vancouver.

“We’re going to keep looking at new ideas to meet our affordable housing challenges head-on, and make sure we’re providing opportunities for young people to put down roots in Vancouver.”

Today’s staff report on family housing outlined a number of new policies the City is reviewing, including:

  • Developing a City-wide Family Housing Rezoning Policy to enable more family housing near schools, parks and community centres;
  • Requiring 35% (up from 25%) family-oriented units in rezonings;
  • Require 50% of units in new social housing projects to be family oriented;
  • Researching entry-level homeownership models to support young families who live and work in Vancouver;
  • Prioritizing family housing on city-owned sites through the Vancouver Affordable Housing Agency.
  • City staff will be reporting back later this year on details of these policies.

As Vancouver grows, increased housing costs and small unit sizes are a challenge for young families. The market is not delivering the volume of family housing that is needed, as less than 1% of Vancouver’s rental units are three bedrooms. There are 8,000 Vancouver families in 1-bedroom and studio apartments.

Today’s report can be viewed at:http://former.vancouver.ca/ctyclerk/cclerk/20150609/documents/rr2presentation.pdf