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The City of North Vancouver recently approved the development of a 77-storey mixed-use condo building in the Lower Lonsdale neighbourhood that will contain 18 market rental units.  The units were made possible through a two-floor density bonus granted by the City.  This development reignited a long standing debate in the city, and one that is common on councils across the region – Is the provision of market rental housing enough to justify additional density and allow developers to avoid contributing cash or other community amenities?  In the end, council decided in favour of the density bonus in exchange for the new market rental housing, citing that the addition of new rental housing contributes to net affordability in the city and is consistent with the City’s official community plan.

The City of North Vancouver should be commended for taking the necessary steps to address the need for rental housing in their community.  In the absence of senior government leadership on housing, municipalities are forced to find their own ways to address their community’s housing needs.  If senior governments were to develop policy and incentives to encourage the development of purpose-built rental, there would be less pressure on local governments to forgo community amenity contributions in favour of market rental housing.  This is precisely what the Canadian Rental Housing Coalition Charter advocates for.  The City of North Vancouver is one of 27 municipalities and housing organizations to endorse the CRHC Charter.  Read the CRHC Charter and to add your organization’s endorsement: The CRHC Charter.

Related Media:
Condo approval reignites city rental debate
North Shore News


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