An NPA Vancouver city councillor is urging her colleagues to unanimously endorse a plan coming before council next week to make housing in the city more affordable.
Melissa DeGenova says the “Affordable Home Ownership” pilot project stems from a motion she put forward almost a year ago.
Essentially, the city would require an ownership stake in some of a building’s units, granting more density to the developer in exchange.
The eligible buyer would then purchase the unit at a discounted rate.
“Which would allow young families and first time home-buyers especially to be able to get into a market that is increasingly unaffordable here in the City of Vancouver.”
If the city approves the pilot, involving 300 units over a 3-year period, it would have to get approval from the province to amend the Vancouver Charter.
Meanwhile Non-Profit Housing Association CEO Kishone Roy says it’s exciting Vancouver and other cities are exploring affordable housing, and has a suggestion on what the city can do with their pilot project.
“I would urge cities like Vancouver to use this opportunity, since we’re not talking about very many units here, to transform the lives of certain population types.”
Roy says, for instance, single working mothers may have enough income to pay a mortgage, but might need help with a down-payment or the high cost of housing in the city.
He says Vancouver has been one of the most aggressive and innovative municipalities addressing affordable housing, but it’s at a crisis point and senior levels of government haven’t ‘been there’ to support cities
like Vancouver in providing affordable housing.