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City of Victoria | 2018-2022 | Mayor and council general discussion


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#10181 spanky123

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Posted 05 December 2021 - 12:33 PM

Looks like Helps is doubling down on her (and her developer buddies) plan to try and re-zone all of Victoria to 6 plex's. Apparently you are now a racist if you don't agree with her and she has the data to prove it!

 

https://lisahelpsvictoria.ca/

 

As usual, if you actually research that the Mayor is referencing it quickly becomes apparent that she is misrepresenting the work.

 

In February of 2021 Berkeley City Council followed Minneapolis, voting 9-0 to remove single family zoning and right the wrongs of the the past

 

when in fact that article she references says 

 

The council’s proposal [PDF] starts a process to explore the end of single family zoning by December of 2022, which means expect a lot of vituperative conversations in the next couple of years


Edited by spanky123, 05 December 2021 - 12:47 PM.


#10182 PPPdev

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Posted 05 December 2021 - 12:55 PM

Hey Spanky123, can you help me understand what about the MM policy are you against?



#10183 Nparker

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Posted 05 December 2021 - 02:15 PM

Looks like Helps is doubling down on her (and her developer buddies) plan to try and re-zone all of Victoria to 6 plex's. Apparently you are now a racist if you don't agree with her...

Guilt and admonishment are her weapons of choice against those who dare to defy her. She's a piece of work for sure.


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#10184 spanky123

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Posted 05 December 2021 - 03:36 PM

Hey Spanky123, can you help me understand what about the MM policy are you against?

 

Sure.

 

1. Instead of consultation and dialogue, the Mayor is trying to ram this through, which she admits.

2. Public will have no say into redevelopment which directly impacts them. 

3. City staff will make decisions without oversight or accountability. Potential for abuse as we have seen in other areas.

4. Property prices will increase and not decrease as claimed.

5. Visitor and guest parking will evaporate as streets become parking lots for multiplexes will little onsite parking.

 

Every measure this Mayor and council have implemented to make housing more affordable has made it less so. No reason to trust them now.


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#10185 Mike K.

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Posted 05 December 2021 - 06:20 PM

What does the likely vote breakdown look like? Here’s what I think:

Pro
- Helps
- Potts
- Dubow
- Alto

Maybe
- Andrew
- T-J
- Loveday

No
- Isitt
- Young

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#10186 John M.

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 08:38 AM

What does the likely vote breakdown look like? Here’s what I think:

Pro
- Helps
- Potts
- Dubow
- Alto

Maybe
- Andrew
- T-J
- Loveday

No
- Isitt
- Young

Thornton-Joe will probably go against this one, and I think Andrew is lean against. I think ole' Jerry is going to be the ultimate swing vote. 



#10187 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 08:41 AM

Are we sure Alto is for?



#10188 spanky123

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 08:46 AM

^^^ If you look at who stands to benefit the most from the zoning changes and who they funded during the last election, it will be a tight vote.


Edited by spanky123, 06 December 2021 - 08:46 AM.


#10189 Mike K.

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 09:02 AM

If Alto wants Helps’ support for a mayoral campaign, then she will likely vote in-step with the mayor from now on outside of votes already going against the mayor.

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#10190 spanky123

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 09:07 AM

If Alto wants Helps’ support for a mayoral campaign, then she will likely vote in-step with the mayor from now on outside of votes already going against the mayor.

 

The Mayor usually doesn't call votes she won't win unless she wants to cast others in a bad light on an issue.


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#10191 PPPdev

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 09:18 AM

Sure.

 

1. Instead of consultation and dialogue, the Mayor is trying to ram this through, which she admits.

2. Public will have no say into redevelopment which directly impacts them. 

3. City staff will make decisions without oversight or accountability. Potential for abuse as we have seen in other areas.

4. Property prices will increase and not decrease as claimed.

5. Visitor and guest parking will evaporate as streets become parking lots for multiplexes will little onsite parking.

 

Every measure this Mayor and council have implemented to make housing more affordable has made it less so. No reason to trust them now.

 

Thanks for this, if you'll entertain me, some counter-thoughts:

 

1. How well has consultation served getting enough housing built? The Opening Doors report by the BC Gov and Federal Gov cited community opposition as a key limiter in housing supply & affordability. What would you suggest as a policy tweak?

 

2. Kind of connected to item #1 but how much "say" is reasonable? The current system is essentially a system of 'veto' which has resulted in a lot of people experiencing significant housing insecurity and displacement. How much should we value the voices of future residents? What would you suggest as a policy tweak?

 

3. Can you cite some examples of this, specifically how the City staff will abuse housing reform to enable housing diversity?

 

4. Do you have any evidence to support that broad zoning reform will increase pricing? There is plenty of evidence that multi-unit housing sells for much less then single family housing so it would seem the status quo of housing scarcity is proving to increase housing prices.

 

5. Do you have any evidence to support this? James Bay has 300% more density than Gonzales yet only has 30% more traffic volumes so City traffic counts (and peer city research) show that density does not increase traffic at a linear rate.

 

Thanks for your points!



#10192 Mike K.

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 09:33 AM

Compare Victoria to Langford. Per-capita, Langford blows Victoria out of the water in every housing category, annually.

Can’t Victoria just be more like Langford and allow more housing to be built, period, instead of introducing blanket zoning changes that are designed with obstacles (the City says this new housing must be geared towards ultra-low-to-moderate income earners at a rate of 50% of the new density; built to Step Code X). That’s likely going to lead to the same scenario we saw with garden suites that the City once promoted as a gentle density solution to housing affordability. I mean, that was about five years ago, only, and has a near-zero uptake rate among the 7,000 properties the City concluded met the land requirements.
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#10193 spanky123

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 09:53 AM

^ To my earlier point, who checks that new housing is living up to its affordability commitments or that people are being vetted as low income?  



#10194 Awaiting Juno

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 10:35 AM

Compare Victoria to Langford. Per-capita, Langford blows Victoria out of the water in every housing category, annually.

Can’t Victoria just be more like Langford and allow more housing to be built, period, instead of introducing blanket zoning changes that are designed with obstacles (the City says this new housing must be geared towards ultra-low-to-moderate income earners at a rate of 50% of the new density; built to Step Code X). That’s likely going to lead to the same scenario we saw with garden suites that the City once promoted as a gentle density solution to housing affordability. I mean, that was about five years ago, only, and has a near-zero uptake rate among the 7,000 properties the City concluded met the land requirements.

 

^^ We need to look at the process and make the process something people want to engage in. Right now - with respect to suites - I think there's a lot of hesitation to provide supply because of the restrictions of the Residential Tenancy Act. It takes one bad tenant to cause a person to really question whether or not they want to supply residential rentals at all. We should be making providing supply that is compatible in our community as easy as possible. We need to look at how long it takes for a project to go from finished plans to building permit. Absent doing a good job with respect to providing supply (at all levels of the market) - we will get more ghettos. We will continue to see the middle getting hollowed out - where either a person is battling poverty or is very well off in order to call Victoria home. 

 

The missing middle approach though: it's misguided at best and harmful at worse. It demands *the highest standards* while also demanding that those units go to those who can least afford *the highest standards*. What we need: basic housing that meets needs adequately and does not pose a health or safety risk. Let those who want (and can afford) the highest standards, pay for them. I agree with Mike, the end result is likely to be a freeze out.


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#10195 PPPdev

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 10:40 AM

^ To my earlier point, who checks that new housing is living up to its affordability commitments or that people are being vetted as low income?  

 

Let's assume that the affordability criteria and building performance are removed as the City's own land economist consultant said that it wasn't viable. Is the policy now more supportable?



#10196 Mike K.

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 10:48 AM

This might also be a way for large land assemblies to occur, where up-zoned properties force people to sell due to taxation, but there’s no business case for a four-plex so the buyer is a developer that will eventually build a high density building on multiple four-plex lots.

I don’t know why Victoria and Victorians have to be so antagonistic towards Langford. They are delivering significant volumes of housing, annually, but they are vilified for it non-stop by the same people championing efforts to deliver more housing. Square that.

Here’s one example of this attitude: https://twitter.com/...7648335872?s=21

Have these people never seen the parking lots along the downtown “waterfront?” I mean, Jesus Christ you guys. Look inward for a moment.

This is a sincere question: Could Victoria not be learning something from the Langford approach? Or maybe the upzoning is a silent acknowledgement that the Langford approach is the way to go, but the route has to be convoluted via upzoning and eventual land assemblies to not outright admit it?

I don’t know what is going on but the urbanists need to chill a little, and acknowledge Victoria has a very costly and time-consuming relationship with the provision of new housing and every measure it takes to build more housing still underperforms what its own neighbours are doing.
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#10197 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 10:52 AM

I know Helps wants to put this through before she rides off into the sunset, but do all the others, that want re-election? 

 

Seems like a bad time to do it, so close to the election.  Better to do it in 2023, and then if the effects are not as negative as some fear, they will have a good election run in 2026 too.

 

Isn't every single CA going to oppose it, at the very least based on all their respective OCPs?

 

But more importantly, why are all these councilors still with us? Can't they get better jobs?


Edited by Victoria Watcher, 06 December 2021 - 10:53 AM.

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#10198 Mike K.

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 10:52 AM

Let's assume that the affordability criteria and building performance are removed as the City's own land economist consultant said that it wasn't viable. Is the policy now more supportable?

By removing that politicians can’t score the socio-economic and environmental points they are really chasing here.

Only in Victoria could a program to deliver more housing get tripped up by the very constructs of this new housing program, and no new housing is built. Which then leads rise to blaming the developers, while the politicians can claim they took big steps to solve the housing crisis.
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#10199 PPPdev

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 10:54 AM

This might also be a way for large land assemblies to occur, where up-zoned properties force people to sell due to taxation, but there’s no business case for a four-plex so the buyer is a developer that will eventually build a high density building on multiple four-plex lots.

I don’t know why Victoria and Victorians have to be so antagonistic towards Langford. They are delivering significant volumes of housing, annually, but they are vilified for it non-stop by the same people championing efforts to deliver more housing. Square that.

Here’s one example of this attitude: https://twitter.com/...7648335872?s=21

Have these people never seen the parking lots along the downtown “waterfront?” I mean, Jesus Christ you guys. Look inward for a moment.

This is a sincere question: Could Victoria not be learning something from the Langford approach? Or maybe the upzoning is a silent acknowledgement that the Langford approach is the way to go, but the route has to be convoluted via upzoning and eventual land assemblies to not outright admit it?

I don’t know what is going on but the urbanists need to chill a little, and acknowledge Victoria has a very costly and time-consuming relationship with the provision of new housing and every measure it takes to build more housing still underperforms what its own neighbours are doing.

 

 

Fair comments Mike...even in the urban planner / urbanist circles, we have for so long focused on Jane Jacobs (JJ) as who we should emulate for grass-roots urbanism and to abstain from anything related to Robert Moses, the villain. But now, the JJ approach has paved the way for grass-roots widespread progressive NIMBYism that has resulted in a housing emergency.

 

Many are now writing how we need to be a blend between Robert Moses (professional evidenced based decision-making) and Jane Jacobs (people first urbanism).

 

So, like you say, the balance is somewhere the middle but right now, it is way to hard to build housing and we don't have to go full Langford but we can certainly learn from their approach.


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#10200 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 06 December 2021 - 11:00 AM

Fair comments Mike...even in the urban planner / urbanist circles, we have for so long focused on Jane Jacobs (JJ) as who we should emulate for grass-roots urbanism and to abstain from anything related to Robert Moses, the villain. But now, the JJ approach has paved the way for grass-roots widespread progressive NIMBYism that has resulted in a housing emergency.

 

Is there any thriving urban areas in Canada/North America/the world that is not in a "housing emergency/crisis"?  

 

Maybe this crisis is just the new norm.  We need to reset the meter.

 

Last time we all checked, home ownership rates remain the same as they were 50 years ago.  Poverty and hunger is in check.  More people than ever live alone in their own place.  Unemployment is still very low.  Low interest rates.


Edited by Victoria Watcher, 06 December 2021 - 11:02 AM.

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