April 12, 2017 (Vancouver, BC) – Council has green lighted the City’s second-ever cohousing project, approved at last night’s public hearing. The project, which submitted an application to rezone three single-family residential lots last summer, will now develop a six-storey building with 25 cohousing homes, 22 of which will be two and three bedroom suited for families.
“Cohousing is an inventive way to create more affordable housing that fits families’ needs and builds vibrant communities,” says Mayor Gregor Robertson. “The City is committed to not only using every tool at our disposal to deliver affordable housing, but also to reducing red-tape and other barriers so creative solutions like cohousing will flourish with our support.”
Vancouver’s first cohousing project on 33rd Avenue was approved in 2013 and is now fully occupied.
Under the cohousing model, residents own their homes and share common facilities, typically a communal dining area and a play room for families. Though each unit is owned separately, they are developed collectively at market cost.
Of Canada’s thirteen cohousing communities, five are in Metro Vancouver.
Mayor Robertson and Council have taken a number of steps to tackle Vancouver’s housing crisis, including:
- Investing $80M in the 2017 Capital Plan for affordable housing - the most ever;
- Approving a record number of new rental homes;
- Bringing in Canada’s first Empty Homes Tax;
- Regulating short-term rentals, like Airbnb;
- Pursuing modular housing on city-owned sites;
- Offering 20 sites of City-owned land worth $250 Million to senior governments to use for affordable housing;
- Increasing family home requirements in new housing projects to 35%; and
- Providing four City-owned sites to enable Vancouver’s first Community Land Trust.