Re: Home renovations fueling Sooke’s building permit revenue boom. Redevelopment and renovation seem to be booming, and that’s a good thing. Transition Sooke has said renos on existing housing are a way forward. So reno development permits are OK.
We want to slow or pause the new single family developments until the new OCP and bylaws/permits can catch up to a “greener” (for want of a better word) building design and planning. We have to keep the building sector (tradespeople, etc.) employed during the just transition.
We are not, as the mayor and council seem to think, advocating that Sooke “switch off” all permits – far from it. As this article shows, there will be no lack of money coming in through reno permits and certainly more than Sooke staff had expected.
What council ought to be realizing is that all of this reno work can bring in money, jobs, and business opportunity, and can be done with no additional expense for district infrastructure (as is the obvious case with new developments – with road work, new sewers, etc.). A new seniors centre has been treading water for years with little or no help from the District of Sooke, and to say that “businesses will never be able to operate here” is simply not true as it seems that redevelopment and social capital developments are picking up the slack in the district just fine.