HOUS­ING Npa-green al­liance could re­verse mass re­zon­ing

The Georgia Straight - - Housing - By

FChar­lie Smith

or the first time in a decade, Van­cou­ver’s mayor will be a ten­ant rather than a home­owner. The man who won the Oc­to­ber 20 elec­tion, Kennedy Stewart, also has some ideas for help­ing to im­prove life for ten­ants, which he elab­o­rated on in an in­ter­view with the Ge­or­gia Straight dur­ing the elec­tion cam­paign.

He has al­ready given con­sid­er­a­tion to the city as­sem­bling land by buy­ing sin­gle-fam­ily homes or du­plexes. He sug­gested that if coun­cil de­cides to take this ac­tion, it could re­zone these prop­er­ties to al­low for multi-unit hous­ing.

“Then we can have rental-only that we as­sem­ble and we could turn over to a non­profit,” he said.

That’s just one method for the mayor-elect to try to meet his goal of 25,000 af­ford­able non­mar­ket rental units in the next decade.

He also said dur­ing the cam­paign that he sup­ported the Vi­sion Van­cou­ver–con­trolled coun­cil’s mass re­zon­ing to per­mit du­plexes in sin­gle-fam­ily ar­eas of Van­cou­ver. This de­ci­sion cov­ered 52 per­cent of the city’s land area and oc­curred in the fi­nal coun­cil meet­ing be­fore the elec­tion.

The “Mak­ing Room” pol­icy was op­posed by the only two in­cum­bents who were elected: Green councillor Adri­ane Carr and NPA councillor Melissa De Gen­ova. It was also op­posed by NPA coun­cil­lors Ge­orge Af­fleck and El­iz­a­beth Ball.

In ad­di­tion, the Mak­ing Room ini­tia­tive was ve­he­mently re­jected by NPA councillor-elect Colleen Hard­wick in a speech she gave be­fore coun­cil prior to the vote.

“The thought that, on your way out, you would even con­sider ap­prov­ing these sweep­ing city­wide zon­ing-by­law changes with­out due process, with­out proper pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion, and with­out com­mu­nity in­put is un­con­scionable,” Hard­wick told coun­cil.

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