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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Vancouver attempts to temper land speculation along Broadway Corridor

Only projects with 100 per cent social or supportive housing will be considered under interim rezoning policy

The City of Vancouver wants to curb land speculation along the Broadway Corridor, ahead of the extension of the Millennium SkyTrain line westward to Arbutus Street — and eventually, UBC.

The city is developing a new plan for the Broadway Corridor, but it won’t be ready until 2020. In the meantime, city staff are recommending an interim rezoning policy that will limit development while the planning process is underway.

In general, new rezoning applications will not be considered, unless they involve 100 per cent social housing or community care facilities, or are already in progress.

The Urban Development Institute says it has been encouraging the city to start a planning process for the Broadway Corridor for years, and would like to see the addition of purpose-built rental housing during this interim period.

“We urge the city to consider expanding on the housing options, especially purpose-built rental units, that can proceed during this lengthy Broadway Corridor planning process, as a future council decision isn’t expected until at least December 2020,” said Anne McMullin, president and CEO.

“This rapid transit line can address much of our congestion issues, but only by fully leveraging this significant taxpayer investment with adequate housing and commercial retail/office space to accommodate annual population growth to our region. With a million more residents expected in the region within the next 20 years, we expect 40,000 new residents, in addition to the existing 140,000 temporary workers and students, to come to Metro Vancouver each year.”

Broadway Corridor supports tens of thousands of jobs

In 2011, there were 125,000 people living in and around the corridor (including UBC), and a further 70,000 are expected by 2045. Over 105,000 jobs are located along the corridor, making it the second largest job centre in B.C. 30,000 more jobs are expected along the corridor by 2045.

The Millennium Line SkyTrain extension along Broadway is desperately needed — with an average of 2,000 bus passengers “passed up” daily on the route due to full buses. The 99-B Line is the busiest route anywhere in Canada and the U.S.

Map: Millennium Line SkyTrain extension to Arbutus

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Peter Meiszner
Peter Meiszner
Peter Meiszner is an experienced journalist and media relations professional, based in Vancouver. As founder of urbanYVR.com, he has been reporting on urban development across the Lower Mainland since 2016, and has also served as vice-chair of the Gastown Historic Area Planning Committee. In October 2022, he was elected to Vancouver city council and is no longer actively reporting for urbanYVR.

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