I've made this point before, I'll make it again: James Bay already has "greater" density. Imagine if Saanich were to have the same overall density as James Bay. The population of Saanich would be more than 600,000.
But aastra, obviously that would be impossible. The comparison between Saanich and James Bay is absurd.
Okay, so imagine if Saanich were to have the same overall density as OAK Bay. The population of Saanich would be more than 170,000! If that isn't food for thought then I don't know what would be.
Maybe people fear that Saanich might be ruined if it were to follow the Oak Bay model? Too dense and unlivable? Not enough parks and green spaces?
For purposes of comparison, if Victoria city were to have the same overall density as James Bay its population would be 117,000 (in other words, not all that much more than its actual population of about 86,000).
There's this popular notion that the central neighbourhoods aren't dense enough, they haven't done enough, they haven't changed enough... it just doesn't stand up to scrutiny. If not for those neighbourhoods and the extreme transformations that occurred in them during the 1960s and 1970s (and the incremental changes that have occurred in them from the 1980s through to today) there would be no density in Victoria at all.
This is why I think people who obsess about knocking down every last house in the city neighbourhoods are way off track. The city neighbourhoods have already done more than their share. It's time for the other parts of Victoria to take the ball (including the underdeveloped parts of Harris Green and north downtown).
I'm not meaning to let Fairfielders and James Bayers off the hook when they make a huge stew about some (usually small) new building here or there. It's silly to be going overboard about the incremental drop-in-a-bucket stuff that happens in those neighbourhoods nowadays. But it's much sillier to be placing all of the focus and all of the seemingly unconquerable burden on those physically small areas even as the rest of metro Victoria adheres to the low density model.