There's some really important stuff in the Provincial bill-to-be that could be very helpful in getting more housing built faster. Among those:
- Doing away with third party appeals at the OLT. This is a massive arrow in the quiver in the fight against NIMBYism, and I really hope the Province doesn't backtrack between now and Royal Assent in the spring
I can't support wholesale removal of the right of affected persons (by way of shadow, by way of overlook, by way of traffic etc.) from being able to go through the legally offered disputed settlement mechanism if they believe the City/proponent is doing them wrong.
I do favour limitations on this; that you can't file an appeal because its Tuesday; you have to show a sound reason under policy why an appeal should be considered. I'm completely fine w/the OLT dispensing with complaints, which on first read would never stand up at a hearing.
I'm also fine with more clearly scoping grounds for appeal, for instance, removing height or density on their own as grounds for appeal; you need to show the adverse impact, on you/your property, not just engage in expensive yelling at clouds.
- No DCs, CBCs, or park levies on affordable housing, incl in IZ zones (and the 5% and 25-yr term cap on IZ AH is big too)
We need clarification on this. If it costs cities too much money, they may move to repeal inclusionary zoning. We need a clear strategy for funding cities, not merely one of knocking down their revenues.
- DC reductions for purpose-built market rentals (25% on 3B, 20% on 2B, 15% on 1B) is a smart way to incent the creation of more family-sized units
The problem here, again, is that the City might choose to make this up by simply raising DCs on everything by a large enough number to offset their revenue loss; in which case the 25% reduction may bring the DCs down to what they already are now.
I'm not opposed to looking at this type of measure; I happen to think Cities are overly-reliant on DCs; but again, that revenue-loss must be offset; and needs to be factored in to this.
- No site plan control for buildings with fewer than 10 units is big for enabling smaller scale development
I agree with this; with the possible exception of Heritage Designated Buildings or immediately abutting properties where some of the details in site plans do matter.
- As with much of this stuff, the devil will be in the details, but the prospect of the OLT prioritizing cases that “create the most housing” is encouraging.
Again, I'm not sure here..........if there are no new resources at the OLT, moving one party ahead in the line invariably means making another wait even longer.
If larger proposals mean longer hearings, it may be that more than one smaller proposal is delayed by advancing the larger one; a net gain here is not a given.