Housing Affordability Plan
Housing affordability is a problem that impacts us all, regardless of income bracket. While every candidate in Ward 4 (including myself) has listed affordable housing projects as top priority, no one except myself has proposed a plan to address housing affordability overall.
In a recent survey of North American Mayors, housing affordability was listed as the single greatest challenge faced by the majority. At the doors, everyone has tended to agree; either they worry about whether their children will be able to live in the city, or their adult children had already been forced to move out of the city because of sky high costs.
Suburban sprawl has come to an end (thankfully), but now we must collectively look innovate with the land we have to once again start building houses. While the Official Plan outlines a protection for neighbourhoods to preserve character and built-form (which is great in Parkdale High Park), that same rule applies in the suburbs, where single floor homes and massive lot sizes prevail, leaving land under-utilized. Furthermore, development charges are harmonized throughout the city, meaning developers are paying the same rate in whatever part of the city. That leads developers to favour areas in the city that will yield the highest returns, which tend to be arterials and established neighbourhoods with existing robust services.
Here is the plan to reform zoning by-laws and development charge framework to:
- Reflect a density goal, encouraging suburban densification
- Promote low-rise apartments in already dense neighbourhoods
- Simplify the process to convert large enough homes into duplexes
- Encourage dispersal of density throughout the city with a focus on low density neighbourhoods
Through these measures, we can wean ourselves off of our reliance on high-rise condominium construction to bridge the gap in our housing crisis. Whether you're a young professional looking for an apartment, a new family looking for a home, or you're nearing retirement and looking to remain at home while covering costs, this is the only plan to improve housing affordability overall.
It is Time For Change.