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

Hamels Fabrics & Quilting is set to open on April 6 in Sooke. The shop is located at 2044 Otter Point Road. (Mark Martins/Pixabay)
Fabric and quilting store opens doors in Sooke

Shop is filled with all kinds of ‘bright, bold and cheery’ designs

Eli, left, Brent, Lindsay and Ava Wilson. (Photo courtesy of Lindsay Wilson)
West Shore families share experience in raising a child with autism

Two families reveal some parallels, but circumstances are different for everyone

Kit Thornton, chief aquarist at the Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea, plays with Wanda, the female Giant Pacific octopus currently residing at the centre. The centre will release Wanda back into the wild next month. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
An octopus named Wanda will soon say goodbye to Sidney

Wanda’s personality is ‘complete opposite’ of previous octopus named after Dr. Bonnie Henry

New hours went into effect at Saanich Parks and Public Works Yard for spring and summer seasons on April 6. (District of Saanich/Twitter)
Spring, summer hours in effect at Saanich Public Works Yard

Residents reminded to practise social distancing, prepare to unload without staff help

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

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

Nanaimo RCMP are asking for the public’s help in identifying the man suspected of being involved in a stabbing. (Photo submitted)
Nanaimo RCMP trying to identify stabbing suspect who wielded rusty knife

Stabbing followed argument between two men at Port Place Shopping Centre April 1

The inside of the Campbell River Community Centre gymnasium has been marked off in order to facilitate the public flowing through the clinic as they receive their COVID-19 vaccination. Photo by Alistair Taylor – Campbell river Mirror
Leftover vaccines go into arms, not down the drain: Island Health

Immunization plan comes with built-in options for any unused vaccines at the end of the day

A man wears a face mask past the emergency department of the Vancouver General Hospital. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)
Calls for stricter action in B.C. as COVID-19 variants projected to climb

Jens von Bergmann says the province has taken a ‘wait and see’ approach when early action is needed

Vancouver’s park board general manager issued a new order Friday restricting tents and other temporary structures from being set up in Strathcona Park after April 30, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Vancouver park board issues order to restrict tents in Strathcona Park

The order issued Friday restricted tents and other temporary structures from being set up after April 30

Most Read