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CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. — As P.E.I.’s housing disaster continues to press Island residents, Charlottetown is making an attempt to get cash from the federal authorities to streamline growth. However they’re not enjoying ball precisely how the feds need.
On Sept. 25, Federal Housing Minister Sean Fraser despatched a letter to Mayor Philip Brown about among the points within the metropolis’s software to the federal housing accelerator fund.
Fraser stated he appreciated a number of components of Charlottetown’s software, together with plans to scale back parking minimums and improve density, however the metropolis would want to “push even additional” in three key areas.
Metropolis council despatched a letter again to Fraser on Oct. 10 laying out how Charlottetown can work with Fraser’s circumstances, but in addition how among the program’s blanket circumstances are an impediment.
The danger of flooding within the metropolis, particularly the historic 500 Heaps space downtown, is effectively documented, Brown stated within the letter.
“Densification with out mass transit, or with out the required enhancements to infrastructure, will perpetuate incidences of flooding in Charlottetown. Council is accountable to direct progress towards areas of the town the place densification will be serviced and supported.”
Following are the circumstances specified by Housing Minister Sean Fraser’s Sept. 25 letter:
- Undertake 4 items as-of-right citywide.
- Search for methods to extend densification round UPEI and Holland School.
- Cut back restrictions on developments to take away subjective measures that make it troublesome for builders to know what might be authorised, akin to “character of the neighbourhood” and take away extreme restrictions on extra dwelling items to permit them to be genuinely inexpensive housing choices.
Supply: Sean Fraser’s letter on Sept. 25
The housing accelerator fund was a 2022 federal price range merchandise that supplied funding to municipalities to make their land use, planning and growth processes extra environment friendly in hopes of constructing 100,000 housing items.
Brown was not accessible to talk to SaltWire on Oct. 20, however the metropolis despatched an announcement saying their software is for streamlining its system and incentivizing builders who handle the “lacking center.”
“These initiatives embody however will not be restricted to, updating the town’s official plan and zoning and growth bylaw to assist elevated density, and implementing an e-permitting system to assist the processing of growth functions.”
On the Oct. 10 common council assembly, Coun. Terry Bernard requested about Fraser’s request for the town to permit four-storey growth “as of proper” throughout the town, that means new initiatives wouldn’t require council approval as much as 4 storeys.
Coun. Norman Beck, who chairs the strategic priorities, communications and intergovernmental co-operation committee, defined the town was not accepting that as a blanket situation.
CAO Eleanor Mohammed added that permitting as of proper growth throughout the town would primarily give permission to filter out the five hundred Heaps.
Town’s letter proposes an alternate known as internet residential density, Mohammed stated.
“Say, if we had been going to do 4 items … as of proper, what would that appear to be if we had been to truly try this for a complete neighbourhood, and also you make that calculation of what number of items you need to obtain for a neighbourhood.”
Brown’s letter addresses Fraser’s different factors about densification round UPEI and Holland School, simplifying processes and eradicating obscure language that makes functions troublesome.
Brown says the town proposes four-storey buildings in an 800-metre radius of UPEI and Holland School and suggests working with the federal authorities and First Nations to develop a deliberate neighbourhood on the former experimental farm property in the midst of the town.
Lastly, the letter agrees to take away subjective measures that make it exhausting for builders to know necessities and take away extreme restrictions on accent dwelling items (ADUs), which might permit low-density housing so as to add a rental unit with out rezoning.
“The brand new official plan and zoning and growth bylaw will permit for ADUs on current residential heaps,” Brown stated. “As famous in our software, we’ve got proposed a financial incentive of $10,000 per ADU. We suggest to develop the utmost ground area of an ADU to 100 sq. metres. (1076.39 sq. ft).”
Council voted 9-0 on the Oct. 10 assembly to ship the mayor’s letter to Fraser.
Logan MacLean is a municipal reporter with SaltWire in Prince Edward Island. He will be reached by e-mail at [email protected] and adopted on X @loganmaclean94.