It’s Time to Rethink Housing Rules in Our Towns and Cities
My response to CBC article: https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/trudeau-housing-responsible-feds-provinces-1.6924290
As a real estate agent, I’ve witnessed a rapid increase in housing prices while supply struggles to keep up. Clearly, our cities require innovative solutions to this expanding problem.
Ineffective Zoning and Approval Procedures
In many neighbourhoods, it is extremely difficult to construct anything other than single-family dwellings due to outmoded zoning regulations and approval procedures. To construct townhouses, duplexes, or low-rise apartments, local governments require builders to leap through hoops (exemptions, variances, public hearings).
As a result, local leaders block or scale back an excessive number of worthwhile projects, even when they meet the requirements of the community. The city officials go too far to appease the most vocal opponents of change. But accommodating a vocal minority restricts the housing supply for everyone else.
Need for Holistic Strategies
If we are sincere about addressing this issue, we require comprehensive strategies. The zoning of cities should be updated to permit more medium-density housing. However, cities must also enhance transit and promote walkable development in order to reduce car dependence. Governments should eradicate antiquated regulations, such as minimum parking requirements, that discourage density.
Implementing Proven Methods
Some cities have already implemented these modifications, and they are effective. The remainder of us have an example to emulate. The key is for local leaders to have the fortitude to update outdated practises that made sense decades ago but no longer do.
Density Done Properly
Cities should permit more housing near public transport and streamline approval processes. Flexible zoning permits the development of thriving communities with space for everyone. Certainly, challenging the status quo requires bravery. However, the cost of inaction is simply too great. Now is the time to reconsider outdated regulations and assist cities in developing more functional communities.