I remain adamantly opposed to secondary suites in Oak Bay for two good reasons.
The first is that secondary suites run contrary to the 1997 Official Community Plan.
That document, otherwise known as Bylaw 3943, states in part, “Oak Bay’s fundamental housing objective is the preservation of the single-family character in most neighbourhoods.”
Secondary suites are densification by another name. Their impact is to diminish the positive ambiance of the quiet, clean, uncluttered and uncrowded neighbourhoods of Oak Bay.
The second reason is that the cost of secondary suites is unreasonably borne by the Oak Bay taxpayers who do not operate them. The average cost of municipal services per resident of Oak Bay for 2009 is $1,524, using the district’s 2009 expense figure of $27.3 million and the 2006 population figure of 17,908. Adding $488 for levies collected on behalf of other agencies, it brings the total to $2,012 per resident per year.
As a citizen of Oak Bay since 1974, I recognize and appreciate the relative affluence and distinctive character of Oak Bay. This character, although already compromised, is worthy of preservation.
Oak Bay does not deserve denigration by densification for the purpose of conformity.
I would not support any change to the current Official Plan, unless and until there is shown to be good and sufficient reason for doing so.
Norman W. Wale