Vancouver Approves Co-Housing Development
In a controversial decision last week by Vancouver city council, our first ‘co-housing’ development has been approved with city council allowing the re-zoning of the land on Main Street and 33rd ave from RS-1 to Commercial zoning (CD-1).
This is the first development to be approved under the City’s new affordable housing interim rezoning bylaw. Mayor Gregor Robertson wrote:
“Confronting the challenge of housing affordability has been a top priority of my work as mayor, and it’s encouraging to see early progress after the steps we’ve taken to enable innovative and affordable housing projects like this one,”
Co-housing is actually a very creative way that could solve some of the affordability problem with our housing in Vancouver. Many countries in Europe have co-housing and it’s proving very successful. It originated in Denmark in 1927 and now around 1% of the population, or around 50,000 danes now live in co-housing, where the community spirit is much stronger.
Co-housing is different to co-operative housing, co-housing is a different approach to affordable housing where living areas are shrunk and instead the development provides larger common areas like kitchens and meeting areas. Mostly appealing to families.
The project still needs to go before an urban design panel to re-work the design of the building, and there was some opposition from some councillors and local residents. What are your thoughts on the plans? Do you think this is a positive way to influence the affordability issues in Vancouver? Comment below!