Per a 2020 Housing Needs Report, the District of Saanich’s housing market isn’t accessible to most residents and the current housing supply doesn’t meet the diverse needs of the community. (Derek Ford/District of Saanich)

Per a 2020 Housing Needs Report, the District of Saanich’s housing market isn’t accessible to most residents and the current housing supply doesn’t meet the diverse needs of the community. (Derek Ford/District of Saanich)

Saanich calls for public input on housing task force recommendations

Report lists 74 recommendations to address district’s housing crisis

Saanich residents are invited to weigh in on the 74 housing strategies recommended by the housing strategy task force.

During a meeting on March 22, council received a report from the housing strategy task force which included 74 recommendations to help Saanich bring more affordable housing to the municipality. The task force, led by Couns. Zac de Vries and Karen Harper, comprised of 18 members who volunteered to develop strategies to tackle the region’s housing challenges. Council accepted the report for information and sent it to a public survey.

READ ALSO: Saanich task force proposes more than 70 recommendations to address housing crisis

Residents were invited to weigh in on the report at the meeting. Some raised concerns about the composition of the task force – two developers were included – the mention of considering areas outside the Urban Containment Boundary (UCB) for housing developments and what they felt was not enough consultation.

“Planning for growth requires some of the suggestions noted in the report, however, it also requires appropriate consultation,” said resident Katherine Whitworth.

Other speakers praised the report, commending the call for a wider variety of housing, densification in urban centres and clarity for developers.

“Housing defines who lives in our community and council’s commitment to pursuing a diversity of housing in all areas of Saanich is both morally and economically commendable,” said Mark Holland, resident and academic representative on the task force.

READ ALSO: New report highlights need for diverse, affordable housing in Saanich

Coun. Nathalie Chambers was pleased to see the completion of the report but had reservations about revising the district’s Development Cost Charges Reduction Bylaw and considering housing proposals outside the UCB.

Until Saanich implements new environmental protections, council should not consider housing recommendations from developers, she said, referencing the development sector representatives included on the task force. Chambers hopes to see further discussions focused on housing affordability.

Residents have until April 30 to share their thoughts on the task force’s recommendations through the survey available at saanich.ca. The task force report and public feedback will be used to develop the final housing strategy which is expected to come to council in June.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

District of SaanichHousing

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Food trucks will be allowed to operate in several Sooke parks beginning May 1. (Black Press Media file photo)
Sooke’s food truck pilot project under scrutiny

Councillor questions impact food trucks will have on nearby restaurants

A walk for autism awareness. (Black Press Media file photo)
COLUMN: Autism acceptance, not autism awareness

Elizabeth Sparling is the mother of a 24-year-old son with Autism Spectrum Disorder

A 3.0-magnitude earthquake occurred off Ucluelet just after 12:30 a.m. on April 10 and was reportedly felt as far south as Oregon. (Map via United States Geological Survey)
Quake off Ucluelet reportedly felt as far south as Oregon

Magnitude 1.5 earthquake also reported off Vancouver Island’s west coast hours earlier

Claremont Secondary’s year-long drama class will perform TRAP, a thrilling play by Stephen Gregg, virtually from April 14-17 at 7 p.m. (Image courtesy Colin Plant)
Claremont’s drama students to ‘TRAP’ audience’s attention with thrilling virtual performances

Grade 9-12 drama class will perform via livestream from April 14-17

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and Premier John Horgan describe vaccine rollout at the legislature, March 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
1,262 more COVID-19 infections in B.C. Friday, 9,574 active cases

Province’s mass vaccination reaches one million people

Four members with Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans were out at Cultus Lake on March 28 and 29 hauling trash out of the waters. (Henry Wang)
PHOTOS: Out-of-town divers remove 100s of pounds of trash from Cultus Lake

Members of Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans hauled out 470 pounds of trash over two days

As of Saturday, April 10, people born in 1961 are the latest to be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. (Black Press files)
B.C. residents age 60+ can now register to get their COVID-19 vaccine

Vaccine registration is now open to people born in 1961 or earlier

A new saline gargle test, made in B.C., will soon be replacing COVID-19 nasal swab tests for kids. (PHSA screenshot)
Take-home COVID-19 tests available for some B.C. students who fall ill at school

BC Children’s Hospital plans to provide 1,200 kits to Vancouver district schools this April

Ruming Jiang and his dog Chiu Chiu are doing fine following a brush with hypothermia that saw several people work together to get them out of the Fraser River near Langley’s Derby Reach Park on March 25, 2021 (Special to the Advance Times)
Man finds men who rescued him from drowning in B.C.’s Fraser River

A grateful Ruming Jiang says he will thank them again, this time in person when the pandemic ends

Tyson Ginter, 7, is proud of his latest Hot Wheels he recently received by Quesnel RCMP Const. Matt Joyce. (Photo submitted)
B.C. Mountie handing out toy cars to light up children’s faces

‘A lot of times it will be the only interaction they have with the police,’ says Const. Matt Joyce

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam speaks during a technical briefing on the COVID pandemic in Canada, Friday, January 15, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s ICUs see near-record of COVID-19 patients last week as variant cases double

Last week, Canadian hospitals treated an average of 2,500 patients with COVID-19, daily, up 7% from the previous week

University of Victoria rowing coach Barney Williams at the University of Victoria in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
UVic, women’s rowing coach deny former athlete’s allegation of verbal abuse

Lily Copeland alleges coach Barney Williams would stand close to her and speak aggressively in the sauna

Librarian Katie Burns with the Fraser Valley Regional Libraries poses for a photo in Chilliwack on June 18, 2019. Monday, April 12, 2021 is Library Workers’ Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of April 11 to 17

Library Workers Day, That Sucks! Day, and Wear Your Pyjamas to Work Day are all coming up this week

Most Read