CARLITO PABLO (GEORGIA STRAIGHT) A proposed rental building in Kerrisdale will charge “above average” rates in the west side of Vancouver.
Although rents will be higher, the City of Vancouver believes that the development will contribute to its “affordable” housing goals.
Rents start at $1,903 per month for a one-bedroom unit, and $3,702 for a three-bedroom unit.
The rents apply at the date of the public hearing before council, which is on July 10.
From then on, the developer of the property at 2109 West 35thAvenue can increase rents yearly based on the allowed raises under the provincial tenancy law until the first tenants move in.
According to the staff report, the proposed rents are “above average” when compared to “average rents in newer buildings in the west area of Vancouver”.
The report noted that newer buildings in the west side have an average monthly rent of $1,798 for a one bedroom, and $3,566 for a three-bedroom unit.
However, according to the report, the proposed rents “provide an affordable alternative to homeownership”.
The single-family lot located on the west side of Arbutus Street is subject to a rezoning application to allow for the construction of a three-storey rental building with 12 units.
There will be six one-bedroom units, and six three-bedroom units.
In a report to council, Karen Hoese, acting assistant director for downtown of the city’s planning, urban design and sustainability, wrote that staff have concluded that the project “generally meets the intent” of the city’s Affordable Housing Choices Interim Rezoning Policy or the AHC Policy.
“The AHC Policy plays a role in the achievement of those targets by helping to realize secured market rental housing,” Hoese explained. “Affordability in the context of the AHC Policy and this application, relates to the delivery of secured rental housing which provides a more affordable housing option for nearly half of Vancouver’s population and contributes to a number of City initiatives intended to create diverse and sustainable communities.”
Moreover, “AHC Policy units are targeted to moderate income households and the program extends throughout all parts of the city, thereby providing options that are more affordable than home ownership.”
If approved by council, the rental development will be exempted from paying development cost levies to the city.
In her report, Hoese stated that the development would “contribute to City-wide goals for the achievement of key affordable housing goals of the City”.
Vancouver city council approves allocation of $8 million towards affordable housing initiatives
NAOBIH O'CONNOR (VANCOUVER COURIER) Vancouver city council has approved staff recommendations on how to spend $8 million worth of empty home tax revenue it’s collected to date.
The City of Vancouver expects it will collect $30 million from the tax in the first year, but implementation and operating costs will eat up $10 million, leaving $20 million to be invested on affordable housing initiatives.
About $18 million of the anticipated $30 million has been collected so far, which, after implementation and operating costs are covered, produces $8 million for distribution.
The money will be split as follows:
Staff recommendations were informed by public feedback collected during a consultation process that included an online survey and a one-day “idea jam.”
“I’m very pleased that council has approved a variety of new affordable housing investments funded by Vancouver’s first Empty Homes Tax,” Mayor Gregor Robertson stated in a June 21 press release. “Thank you to everyone who took the time to submit, like, and comment on your favourite housing ideas. We will now be moving forward with new initiatives that will boost support for low-income renters, create more co-op and non-profit housing, and look at new opportunities to make the best use of our existing rental housing.”
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