Thursday, June 13, 2024

BC reveals plan to develop over 100,000 new homes to help ease housing crisis

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The province of BC has announced the introduction of a new Homes for People plan that will create more than 108,000 new houses and apartments by 2028.

Premier David Eby and Minister of Housing Ravi Kahlon announced the new action plan on Monday, April 3rd.

“This plan will take us to the next level with unprecedented actions to tackle the challenges head-on, delivering even more homes for people, faster,” Eby said.

The Homes for People plan is set to focus on four priorities – unlocking more homes faster; delivering better, more affordable homes; helping those with the greatest housing need; and creating a housing market for people, not speculators.

In addition to creating tougher enforcement of short-term rental rules, Eby and Kahlon committed to eliminating discriminatory age and rental restrictions in stratas after some families were unable to rent apartments.

The plan also includes a focus on creating more First Nations, student and social housing.

It’s expected that more details on these specifics will come later.

As of today’s meeting, the new initiative is aimed at unlocking more homes, faster, by creating the conditions to encourage faster housing construction and reduce development costs, including changes in regulations and zoning.

Some of the major promises include:

  • The deliverance of small-scale multi-unit townhomes, duplexes and triplexes through zoning changes
  • Building 10,000 homes near transit hubs over the next 15 years 
  • 6,000 more units for renters, including families and seniors through the Community Housing Fund, 1,750 more homes for Indigenous Peoples on- and off-reserve, and 1,500 additional homes to support women and children escaping violence.\
  • Deliver 4,000 additional on-campus student housing rooms for post-secondary students
  • Deliver more homes for people experiencing homelessness:
    • 3,900 additional supportive housing units for people who are experiencing homelessness or are at risk of homelessness
    • 240 additional purpose-built complex care housing units at approximately 12 locations around the province to support people with more complex mental-health and addictions challenges

If completed, the newly introduced housing plan will provide significant balance and relief to a rapidly growing population on Vancouver Island, an initiative Eby says is long overdue.

“If you’ve scrolled through rental listings or seen the prices of homes in your community, you know how tough it is to find an affordable, decent place to live,” said Eby. 

“Even though our province is currently building more housing than ever before, it’s just not enough to meet the need. This plan will take us to the next level with unprecedented actions to tackle the challenges head on, delivering even more homes for people, faster.”

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