Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Langley City’s new Official Community Plan adopted. Council asks for an affordable purpose-built rental policy.

Langley City is a member municipality of the Metro Vancouver Regional District. In our region, municipal Official Community Plans must be consistent with regional growth strategies. Langley City Council sent our new proposed Official Community Plan to the Metro Vancouver Regional District Board for approval back in July. The Official Community Plan contains “regional context statements” that show how the Official Community Plan’s policies are consistent with the regional growth strategy.

On October 29th, the Metro Vancouver Regional District Board approved Langley City’s Official Community Plan.

Metro Vancouver staff pointed out that Langley City’s new Official Community Plan further enhances regional objectives by adding 13.8 ha of land to the Mixed Employment regional land use designation. This designation preserves land for non-residential commercial and light industrial uses.

Additional employment land in red outlines with salmon-coloured inside. Select map to enlarge.

Langley City’s new Official Community Plan also supports the regional district’s industrial land strategy by protecting “remaining industrial land, intensify and optimize industrial lands, and bring the existing land supply to market.”

I’m proud that Langley City continues to support enhancing our region’s objectives.

With Metro Vancouver Regional District Board approval, Langley City Council adopted its new Official Community Plan yesterday afternoon, concluding a process that started in 2019. This new plan will now help guide our community’s future for the next several decades.

New land-use map for Langley City. Select map to enlarge.

For more information about the Official Community Plan, please visit Langley City’s website.

Langley City staff are currently working on an updated zoning bylaw that will implement the policy objectives of the new Official Community Plan.

While Langley City’s Official Community Plan has a one-for-one replacement policy for purpose-built rental units, it is silent on the affordability of those rental units. Older purpose-built rental units have lower market rents than newer units, so when these units are replaced, the market rents will be significantly higher than before.

Langley City Council passed the following motion, which I proposed:

THAT in the 2022 capital budget, staff include a line item for creating a below-market rate rental policy to be applied when older purpose-built rental buildings undergo redevelopment;
THAT staff investigate, as part of the policy development, requiring a prescribed percentage of new rental units to have below-market rental rates, secured through a housing agreement, on the site of older purpose-built rental buildings that are redeveloped; and,
THAT staff investigate, as part of the policy development, opportunities to rehouse people displaced due to the redevelopment of older purpose-built rental buildings within their existing neighbourhood.

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