Urban planning for people, something to think about …
Opinion: Let’s plan for people, not profit
Misleading: Figures city uses to justify increased residential zoning don’t stand up to scrutiny
By Elizabeth Murphy, private-sector project manager and former property development officer with the City of Vancouver’s Housing and Properties Department and for BC Housing
Special to the Vancouver Sun, April 1, 2015
The City of Vancouver’s justification for a plan to increase market residential zoning capacity is that a million more people are coming by 2041, so we have to prepare. But these numbers are misleading and do not tell the whole story. This estimated million more people is for the whole region, with only a small fraction headed to the City of Vancouver.
Also, Vancouver has a huge amount of zoned capacity that has yet to be built out. Some of this is in long-standing plans established decades ago, and some of it has been planned and zoned more recently. The city has refused to provide in any transparent fashion the actual total numbers of zoned capacity city-wide.
The push for major tower rezoning is motivated by those who will benefit financially, but there is no urgent lack of supply for new market housing capacity in the city. The public has ample time, years in fact, to choose among many different forms about how the city is to grow.
To understand what is really happening, one needs to look at the actual numbers rather than just the public relations sound-bite.
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