Tag Archives: redevelopment

North Vancouver District Official Community Plan monitor comes to council with tough questions

If you find this article interesting, please use the buttons at the end of the article to share it with your neighbours on social media.

In October 2017 controversy over implementation of the District of North Vancouver’s Official Community Plan (OCP) led council to create an OCP Implementation Monitoring Committee. The Committee is coming back to Council on Monday February 19 with a report on its work, some tough questions and a request for resources to answer some questions.

These are important questions for everyone in the District. Thanks to the OCP Committee for making them public and we look forward to specific answers to specific questions.

In this report the Committee lists its priorities, the top three of which are housing, community structure/integrated planning and transportation/lighting and safety. The issue covered in this report is housing.

Among the points raised by the Committee are:

  • There is a lack of opportunity to develop mid-level density (i.e.coach/townhouses/duplex/triplex/rowhouses) in proximity to the town and village centres. However, there is concern that even if these options existed, they would be priced out of reach for the average family.
  • The need for affordable rental housing is increasing. rental housing that is taken out of the market during redevelopment, and the lack of rental opportunities for these displaced citizens to move into. The Committee has requested information from staff on the number of old rental units that have been redeveloped, and the number of rental units replaced through that process of redevelopment.
  • New town centres are not on their own providing affordable housing purchase options in the district. A hard look needs to be taken at the town centres to determine whether they are truly providing affordable options, or whether they have become predominantly investment opportunities.
  • The lack of rental housing
  • The reconstruction of the existing housing stock and, in particular, the construction of “monster” homes that substantially change the character of some neighborhoods.
  • Options for removing speculation from the market. Options such as coop, or land banking

The Committee raised the following questions:

  • Is the anticipated demand for housing in the OCP on target? Is it on target for town centres? For single-family neighbourhoods?
  • Is there anything in the District’s regulatory framework that makes it not feasible for developing duplexes/triplexes, rowhouses, etc.? Or is it the market that prices these housing types out of reach?
  • What economics are required to build ground-oriented multifamily housing in multiple scenarios (rowhouse, townhouse, bare land strata, fee simple coach house, etc.)? What are the current developments in process? What types of housing are they? Are they in town centres or elsewhere?
  • What are the issues affecting affordability in the DNV?
  • What incentives could be offered to developers who build certain types of housing? What could those incentives be?
  • In the new town and village centre developments, is there evidence of speculation or foreign ownership, which is driving up the prices of these units?

The terms of reference set for the Committee when it was created called for quarterly reports. We look forward to the next one and tough questions in other areas.

The report can be found on page 29 of Council’s agenda package here:

http://app.dnv.org/OpenDocument/Default.aspx?docNum=3485605 

Follow the Delbrook Community Association by subscribing to this page, or

Following us on Facebook at Delbrook Community Association, North Vancouver, or

Following us on Twitter @delbrookca

Advertisements

North Vancouver so far resisting trend to inequality

If you find this article interesting, please use the buttons at the end of the article to share it with your neighbours on social media.

The Globe and Mail has an interesting article today discussing how in Vancouver, wealthy communities are moving east, while “Burnaby, Richmond and Surrey – places that used to symbolize a comfortable, middle class existence – now show the highest concentrations of low-income households.”

North Vancouver, the article reports, “has maintained a solid half/half mix of middle-income and high-income neighbourhoods over 35 years, with a negligible 3 per cent increase in low-income areas.”

One commentator in the article argues, “The danger in such a trend is that a region with dramatic inequality leads to segregation, ghettoization and growing feelings of frustration and resentment. ”

University of B.C. geography professor David Ley, argues that rapid development is not the solution:

“The wide-open supply argument has been thoroughly tested and it’s been found wanting,” he says. “The problem has simply been aggravated. I think now, finally, people are recognizing that supply is not a problem solver, but in fact a problem generator because it is pricing up land all the time.”

As for the city’s (Vancouver) new housing strategy, which acknowledges that unabated development is not a solution, Dr. Ley says it’s a start.

An interesting article with some eye opening graphics. You can find it here:

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/real-estate/vancouver/how-income-inequality-is-reshaping-metrovancouver/article37196565/

 

Follow the Delbrook Community Association by subscribing to this page, or

Following us on Facebook at Delbrook Community Association, North Vancouver, or

Following us on Twitter @delbrookca

 

 

Delbrook Community Association submits proposal for the Delbrook lands

If you find this article interesting, please use the buttons at the end of the article to share it with your neighbours on social media.

Following lengthy community consultations earlier in 2017, the Delbrook Community Association (DCA) has submitted a proposal to District of North Vancouver Council on what to do with the Delbrook lands site.

The two buildings currently on the site are now largely closed with much of the previous activity being moved to the new Delbrook Recreation Centre on Queens Road.

In an extensive and expensive community consultation process in the spring the community concluded the land should not be sold, that it should have a large component of parks in new plans, and that a portion of the property should be used for non-market housing.

District Staff are now in the process of preparing a report that is planned to go o Council this autumn. The DCA has submitted its proposal to Mayor and Council and to staff to inform this planing process.  DCA president Rene Gourley in his letter to Cuncil said,

It is our hope that this submission will help inform the development of the staff report to Council anticipated for the autumn as well as the thinking of Council itself.

The DCA believes this proposal is consistent with the principles, goals and policies of the OCP in terms of sensitively providing diverse housing and providing parks and open spaces for use by all segments of the population. It also is in keeping with the findings of the Districts extensive community consultation on use of the Delbrook Lands.

The Delbrook Community Association looks forward to participating in these discussions on this important project for our community.

The DCA proposal calls for the south parking lot area to be used for ground oriented housing with the sale of the properties restricted to first responders working in the District. Appreciation of the value of the units would be limited to ensure when sold the units would continue to be affordable by first responders.

The DCA’s full proposal is shown below.

Submission to Mayor and Council

District of North Vancouver

Regarding Future Development of the Delbrook Lands Site

June 2017

The District of North Vancouver is in the process of determining the future use of the Delbrook Lands. We believe the future use of this property offers the potential for both the long-term use of the community and the immediate needs of the community for both family based, ground oriented housing offering homes to people offering important services in our community.

The District undertook an extensive community consultation on this property involving both local residents and residents of the broader District. We anticipate any forthcoming bylaw proposals pertaining to these lands will reflect the principles articulated by the community.

Specifically,

none of the land is to be sold

  1. most of the land is to be retained as green space
  2. limited non-market housing is to be provided at no cost to the District

The January 17 Staff Report to Council on the results of the Public Consultation Process identified the following:

the south parking lot is dedicated to housing

  • the balance of the lands being reserved for parks and green space.

The Delbrook Community Association welcomes the long sought park / green space for the community along with limited non market housing as an appropriate blueprint for any proposed re-zoning bylaws.

 Delbrook Community Association Proposal for

Non-Market Housing on Delbrook Public Assembly Lands

 In this context, the DCA favours a non-market housing model which would not only provide perpetually affordable housing at no cost to the District and preserve the District’s propriety of the land, but would also enhance public safety.  Effectively, we support a restricted sale and restricted price model as per the Whistler Housing Authority.

In its simplest terms, our proposal includes the following:

the DNV would provide leased land at a minimal cost on which two and three bedroom ground oriented townhouses would be constructed; ground level housing is in extreme demand for families and helps create community among neighbours

  1. Units would be constructed in what is ow the south parking lot of the property.   We envision a small number of low rise units built along Queens. Units would be attractive to families and would be offered for sale only to District firefighters as well as paramedics, nurses and police officers who work in the City or District of North Vancouver.
  2. Such purchasers would also be
    1. Canadian citizens or permanent residents
    2. could not own another home
    3. and would work for a minimum of 20 hours per week in the District or City.

In the event of a natural or man-made catastrophe, first responders would already be in our community thereby addressing some of the concerns recently expressed by the public and by some members of Council.  In addition:

Through purchasers’ mortgages, the capital cost of construction could be quickly recovered.

  • A covenant requiring the owner to sell his/her home to another similarly “qualified” person within 6 months of leaving employment in North Vancouver would also be in place.

The appreciated cost of these units would be determined not by the free market, but by the Core Canadian Consumer Price Index. The price of such non-market homes would always be in reach of middle income earners while simultaneously providing the owner with the opportunity to build some equity.  Furthermore, the District could, if necessary, re-purpose the land in the future by purchasing units as they came available for sale.

Finally, the DCA affirms that the proposed use of the Delbrook Lands in general, outlined above, is consistent with the principles, goals and policies of the OCP in terms of sensitively providing diverse housing and providing parks and open spaces for use by all segments of the population.

Details of the manner in which the Municipality of Whistler operates its restricted sale and restricted price program is available at www. Whistler Housing Authority .ca.

 The Delbrook Community Association thanks you for your consideration of this non market housing proposal.  We are confident this proposal meets and in fact, exceeds the expectations of those who participated in the intensive consultation process.  Ground level, non market housing with the DNV retaining ownership and with families and inhabitants so essential to our well being is a win-win for all residents.  We welcome the opportunity to discuss any questions you may have and offer our support as the DNV plans the future of the publicly held Delbrook Lands.

Follow the Delbrook Community Association by subscribing to this page, or

Following us on Facebook at Delbrook Community Association, North Vancouver, or

Following us on Twitter @delbrookca

 

 

 

 

DNV Council looks at redevelopment of single family homes

If you find this article interesting, please use the buttons at the end of the article to share it with your neighbours on social media.

In many areas, the District of North Vancouver is an older community. Many of the homes built 50 years ago in affordable communities are being torn down and replaced by much larger, much more expensive homes.

This redevelopment of reasonably priced homes is one of the reasons why homes in the District are becoming unaffordable. But citizens have raised other concerns about the process including the impact of much larger homes on their communities.

On March 6th the DNV Council held a workshop on Single Family Home Renewal. The presentation to the workshop by Dan Milburn, General Manager, Planning, Properties and Permits and Tom Lancaster, Manager of Community Planning can be found here.

http://app.dnv.org/OpenDocument/Default.aspx?docNum=3146445

The report found that in 2016 there had been roughly 500 permit for either new single family homes or additions, renovations and repairs. This seems to have been fairly consistent since 1991.

The report outlined community concerns and found more than 40% of issues raised had related to the size of the new house and its impact on the community.

SFH concerns

The report concludes that single family home renewal will only be increasing.

Follow the Delbrook Community Association by subscribing to this page, or

Following us on Facebook at Delbrook Community Association, North Vancouver, or

Following us on Twitter @delbrookca