featuring

District of Sechelt Housing Advisory Committee

 

The Housing Advisory Committee is made up of citizens, organizations, and council members to explore housing solutions in Sechelt.

About

The Housing Advisory Committee was established in 2018, after the election, when the housing shortage was identified as a major issue in the community.  The committee is made up of nine people, including a council member, and leaders from local non-profit and private sector organizations that are impacted by the housing market.

Their mandate is to consider, inquire into, report and make recommendations to Council on:

  • Establishing policies, programs and initiatives that address a range of housing needs from affordable housing for low-income households, affordable rental or ownership options for young families/workforce housing through to special needs housing and care facilities
  • Leveraging Partnerships
  • Creating “better” neighbourhoods (sustainable, connected, walkable, liveable,  etc.) with appropriate housing and transportation choices.

Projects & Initiatives

Free Standing Rental Units

Research conducted by the Committee demonstrated that one of the most efficient and effective ways to increase housing inventory is to address under-utilized property that currently has single-family houses. The Committee is investigating strategies for property owners to build freestanding rental suites including garden suites, carriage homes, or auxiliary dwellings on their property.  Building a second dwelling on an existing property will create gentle density that has minimal impact on neighbourhood character. The Committee is outlining ways that the District can encourage the construction of these with negligible tax implications.

 

Connecting Organizations and Mobilizing for Change

The Housing Advisory Committee works as a conduit between developers, property owners, non-profit organizations, funders, and community members. They have developed a strong network of organizations focussed on housing, including BC Housing, CMHC, the Sunshine Coast Affordable Housing Society, and Workforce Housing.  They are also able to connect organizations to important resources about funding, zoning and development processes, while providing valuable input on the type of housing that is most needed in the community.

Currently, the Committee is bringing together a leadership team from organizations and municipal government to create working groups that address specific actionable items outlined in the Housing Needs Assessment Implementation Framework Report.

 

Contact

District of Sechelt Housing Advisory Committee

Matt Mclean, District of Sechelt Councillor