Any new single-family house that is built would only be allowed to go to the equivalent of 60% of the lot’s area, so only 2,400 square feet on the typical 33 by 122 Vancouver lot. But a multiplex, of whatever arrangement, will be permitted to go up to 4,026 square feet on that same lot.
Until now, the maximum anyone could build, if they were preserving a character house and adding a laneway or basement suite, was 3,260 square feet. There will be a public hearing in the fall and potentially be in force by January.
As a result, larger laneway houses would also be allowed, which would make them more suitable for family housing than the 650 square feet to 900 square feet currently allowed, depending on lot size.
Among them are the special “design zones” on the west side that were created in the 1990s, as councils of the day responded to residents complaining about garish new monster houses, are being eliminated so that there is just one set of rules for all former single-family zones.
No longer will builders in zones such as RS-5 or RS-6 have to come up with building plans that, for example, required them to match the architectural look of homes on either side of them.
City Council plans to meet this fall and have the new policy in place for 2024.
If things go according to plan this new change will cause upward pressure on prices significantly.
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