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Secondary suites bylaw heads for public hearing in Oak Bay

Latest document includes wording to specifically prohibit short-term accommodations
Oak Bay’s secondary suite bylaw heads for public hearing Sept. 8 at 6 p.m. (Black Press Media file photo)

Oak Bay’s secondary suites bylaw has its day in public purview Sept. 8, when residents can weigh in on the guidelines that would allow suites in all residential zones.

The district initiated its secondary suites study in 2018 and wrapped with a final report last fall where council weighed in on a series of areas to fine-tune.

RELATED: Off-street parking added to impending secondary suite policy for Oak Bay

Council decided the program would address new and existing structures; suites be incorporated into the single-family residential zone; there be no minimum or maximum lot size; owner occupancy be a requirement; enforcement be complaint-based; basic health and safety standards be met for existing homes using alternate compliance methods, full BC Building Code compliance required for new buildings; and that Oak Bay use a registration program to track suites.

Further tweaks earlier this year include allowing either a boarder or a secondary suite, and requiring an off-street parking space.

The public hearing will also include an updated definition of family to include one caregiver and introduces wording to specifically prohibit secondary suite use as short-term accommodations.

RELATED: Oak Bay whittles down the how of impending secondary suites policy

Residents looking to participate can register by emailing to receive instructions to join the live meeting on Zoom. The deadline to register is Sept. 8 at 9 a.m. Written submissions can be emailed to or mailed to District of Oak Bay at 2167 Oak Bay Ave., Victoria, B.C. V8R 1G2, or dropped off during regular business hours, Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Deadline is Sept. 8 at noon.

The meeting is set up to be attended virtually or in person on Sept. 8 at 6 p.m. at municipal hall and online at

A special council meeting is set for Sept. 19 for potential adoption. The district targets early next year for full implementation.

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Christine van Reeuwyk

About the Author: Christine van Reeuwyk

I'm dedicated to serving the community of Oak Bay as a senior journalist with the Greater Victoria news team.
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