October 4, 2018 5:47 pm

Vancouver mayoral candidates have their say on housing

A huge field of candidates is vying to replace Vancouver mayor Gregor Robertson.

Chester Ptasinski / Global News
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It is hard to enter a conversation with someone in Vancouver without the same topic coming up: housing.

It is that issue that has defined the 2018 mayoral race. With Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson leaving after a decade on the job, there are 21 people running to replace him on October 21.

READ MORE: Live B.C. election results 2018: Find your riding and candidates


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Global News asked all mayoral candidates running for election in the City of Vancouver, four questions about zoning, the rental market, housing supply and any other important issue they think should be addressed.

We are posting the responses below, unedited from the candidates who replied and also identifying the ones who are running but did not respond to our questions before deadline. Candidates were asked to answer each question in less than 100 words.

Vancouver

Maynard Aubichon – did not respond by deadline

Hector Bremner

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

Yes. More needs to be done. Diverse housing types, including triplexes, fourplexes and low rise apartment buildings, should be legalized in all residential neighoubourhoods.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

YES Vancouver will implement a 3 year market correction plan that will issue permits for 50,000 to 75,000 new purpose built rental homes and aims to raise the vacancy rate to 3%. We will incentivize rentals by treating rental housing as its own amenity, exempting them from CAC payments, fast track permits and allow Development Cost Levies to be paid in installments over 10 years. YES will add vacancy rate targets to the planning process. For more details see our Let’s Fix Housing Action Plan https://yesvancouver.ca/letsfixhousing-action-plan/

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

YES Vancouver has a comprehensive Let’s Fix Housing Action Plan (https://yesvancouver.ca/letsfixhousing-action-plan/). We will create a new city plan that pre-zones for the next 50 years of growth and legalizes diverse housing types across the city. YES will end the reliance on spot rezoning. Additionally, we will clean up the development and permitting process at City Hall, so it doesn’t take 5 to 7 years to receive a building permit. YES will commission an independent core review of the entire permitting and development system.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

How we re-humanize our neighbourhoods. As Vancouver grows we must never forget that the character of our neighbourhoods is defined by the people in them. We need to re-center our neighbourhoods around people. Let’s build healthy, vibrant, complete neighbourhoods. Neighbourhoods with great amenities, where new multi-family housing is on the quiet, unpolluted side streets. We say YES to neighbourhoods for everyone, from young people starting out on their own, to new families, to seniors looking to age in place.

Golak Z Buday

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

I think we need to not tell individual land owners what they can or can do with their property, so long as it doesn’t harm anyone else.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

It is impossible to promise anything and be honest, I can only share what I believe. I think removing the Property Use and Maintenance Bylaws and a 0.1% Property tax to replace all others will boost interest in building more affordable property here, as well as ending Rapid Transit and easy commuting Transit in Vancouver. I think people are tired of 10 year promises and big money plans offered just to take long enough to require two re-elections to prove they lied.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

Private persons will build. We can change permits, into contracts and negotiate Rental Only, but there is no guarantee it will be cheap. To me affordable is under 1000 bucks.
Yes a wealthy libertarian piggy right. A Koch brother wallet. I hear it all the time. Sick of the lie, Economics professors are more insufferable libertarians, but they are the ones with more money.
Just a humble self-employed freelancer and comic with a good family. Anyhow, the answer of 2, is the best way to gear toward this. Can see me on BIV’s video on Transit.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

A Libertarian is a person who will not take a blind eye to police abuse, and will not censor even voices they don’t like making me fit to mediate council.

READ MORE: Race to watch: Vancouver’s mayoral race serves up some history in the making

Sean Cassidy (edited to meet word count requirements)

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

I will work with councillors to reverse the decision immediately. The outgoing Mayor and Council’s decision to pass the Making Room duplex upzoning is a wholesale careless destruction of Vancouver’s neighbourhoods. In today’s real estate market conditions, this mass upzoning of Single Family Homes (SFH) areas to duplexes will trigger real estate inflationary effects across the board. Real estate developers, speculators and already high income earners with high mobility will benefit the most from this upzoning. On the other hand, low to middle income families and renters living in affected SFH areas will be at risk of displacement in a low vacancy market with soaring housing costs.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

As a former senior government official at CMHC who co-financed billions of dollars of purpose-built rentals across Canada, financed real estate development projects for Royal Trust (now Royal Bank), did consumer mortgage financing, as well as worked for a developer managing rental property, I understand what renters need. Here are several actions I will take:
• Regulate market rents and rates exercise its ability under the Vancouver Charter to set and regulate market rents and the rates at which they increase for projects that go through council approval.
• Advocate higher levels of government to provide tax incentives for rental projects.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

Advocate for policies to stop real estate speculation so housing is built to be affordable homes, not speculative financial instruments. Specific measures include advocating the Province to expand foreign buyers tax to include presale assignments on condos and townhomes, add mandatory holding periods for presale assignments, and introduce a flipping tax to discourage speculation.
• Increase social housing supply on City-owned land.
• Mandate developers to build social housing on privately-owned land where social housing was committed but unbuilt (i.e. Concord’s land).
• Advocate BC Housing and Ottawa to increase commitment to public sector and non-profit social housing development.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

Vancouver needs to develop a strong economy in a time when wages are stagnating, while living and housing costs are increasing. This means that we need to diversify our economy so it becomes less dependent and exposed to the real estate market, protect and create space for industrial and commercial office uses, discourage landlords from evicting businesses by increasing leases, protect and help small businesses sustain, and more. For more information about other parts of my platform, go to http://www.seancassidyformayor.com.

Ping Chan

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

If elected as the Mayor of Vancouver, I have to accept the previous City Council’s decision in this matter, although it will not alleviate the housing affordability problem at all.
I predict that the house prices will go up much higher because of the attractive returns on speculation and the increase of the assessed property values subsequent to the rezoning. Then, the property taxes will go up accordingly and the landlords will raise the rents to cover the tax increase. The richer will become richer, while the renters will become poorer.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

I, as the elected Mayor of Vancouve, shall immediately apply for a lion share of the newly announced BC Seniors Care fundings of $240 million to build more senior care homes for senior voters and whose homes will be available for renting, to address the supply side of the vacancy. Furthermore, I shall motion to raise the Foreign Buyers Tax for an additional 5%.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

The main problem of the housing affordability is that most of the vacant lots are not developed for housing and were sitting idle for many years. The landowners of those vacant lot very much enjoy the automatic property value increase annually. If elected as the Mayor of Vancouver, I shall strongly advocate the City Council to expropriate all the vacant lots accordingly especially those contaminated properties. If the landowners do not use the lots, they will lose them.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

If elected as the Mayor of Vancouver, I shall aggressively advocate Rent-to-Own Affordable Housing Scheme to restore the affordability, livability and opportunity for voters to own their own homes to raise their family happily in Vancouver.
In addition, the extra Land Value Taxes for the vacant lots will be motioned expeditiously to curb the holding of vacant lots not put forward for residential or commercial development application in Vancouver.
Thank you very much for contacting me and for allowing me to express my great desire to provide realistic hope for Vancouverites who do not have enough down-payment to acquire their own homes.

READ MORE: B.C. municipal election 2018: Vancouver results

David Chen – did not respond by deadline

Connie Fogal (edited to meet word count requirements)

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

No I am categorically opposed to this rezoning. I am appalled that this council would do such a thing without consultation or warning to the public, especially as they are on their way out. They must have been fulfilling a deceptive plan to restructure Vancouver to accommodate developers and to force transfer assets from the middle calss to developers.
We must stop this densification and forced transfer of assets if we want a livable city of a mixed population. Otherwise, Vancouver will be a place only for the very rich and the few remaining of the older generation who managed to hang on to their homes.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

The only way to meet the basic need of housing is for public financing of the building of homes, as was done after the Second World War. We should again borrow from the Bank of Canada at interest free rates, which federal and provincial governments have refused to do since mid 70’s. The private sector, functioning on a need for profit, cannot provide the housing because there is no profit for them. Endless increased taxing of the middle class will never provide the housing needed, but will destroy the middle class. Governments must look to renewing programs like the Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

Everybody in the world does not have to live in Vancouver. Industry, educational, medical and scientific organizations need to be encouraged to locate elsewhere to create new communities away from Vancouver with less densification. Densification is unhealthy living. Canada is a vast geographical area. People can spread out and around.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

Grave environmental issues despoiling the earth.

READ MORE: COMMENTARY: A surprise exit opens up Vancouver’s mayoral race

Mike Hansen – did not respond by deadline

Fred Harding

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

We do not support this decision as it only fuels speculation. A property that is worth $2 million and replaced with a duplex, each half of the duplex, on the westside at least, would now sells for over well over $2 million each. Further, the speculation on properties would drives the middle class away from single family homes and duplexes as they become more unaffordable, thus causing a higher demand for condos and driving up their prices.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

The NDP and Kennedy Stewart have recently backtracked on their proposed rental hike. It is our view that affordable housing be at $400 for a bachelor, $900 for a single-bedroom, $1300 for a two-bedroom. We will reduce the CAC demanded of developers only building rental units.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

According to Carol James of the NDP government, they have allocated 114,000 affordable new homes to be built in BC. A large number has been allocated to Vancouver as well as funding for affordable homes in the city, instead of duplicating the process, we will wait a reasonable amount of time to see if what has come to be promised is delivered. In addition, we are supporting and advocating for seniors to remain in their homes by reducing their property tax by 10%.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

Increasing and expanding arts and cultural spaces, as well as allowing responsible consumption of alcoholic beverages on beaches.

READ MORE: Ian Campbell departure pushes Kennedy Stewart ahead in Vancouver’s Mayoral race: Poll

Sophia C Kaiser – did not respond by deadline

Jason Lamarche

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

NO, Jason Lamarche does not support the new zoning policy that permits duplexes in 99% of single family Vancouver neighbourhoods. We should protect the visual beauty and heritage of Vancouver’s single family neighbourhoods by lowering the allowable duplex ratio through effective public consultation. Vancouver voters never agreed to a wholesale rezoning of all of our single family neighbourhoods.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

If Jason Lamarche is elected Mayor of Vancouver he will use his Democratic support and Executive Powers to impose strict Rent Control in select areas with 1 bedroom rents capped at $500 per month and 2 bedroom rents capped at $1,000 per month. Only Canadian citizens can access Rent Control apartments as part of Jason Lamarche’s extensive Canada First platform.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

In order to cool housing demand and lower housing prices; Vancouver should ban foreign ownership of all property for the next two years with a price and supply review scheduled for 2020. Vancouver needs to increase the supply of housing through gentle density zones that allows the development of more four to eight storey buildings.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

If Jason Lamarche is elected Mayor of Vancouver he would terminate the unelected, anti-democratic, unaccountable, Metro Vancouver board and organization. Jason would repatriate this multi-billion dollar portfolio back into Vancouver to fund local priorities like the Vancouver Police Department, Vancouver Fire Department, daycare centres, ESL classes in libraries and community centres, and youth sports projects.

Katy Le Rougetel

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

If you design a better plaster for a gushing artery, the patient still dies. Yes, permitting duplexes is right. But all the ‘solutions’ being debated are utterly inadequate. Housing is not build for human needs here. Billions of dollars pour into the real estate bubble in Vancouver as the rich try to turn a profit amidst a worldwide capitalist economic crisis. To turn the tide, unions must lead a social movement demanding massive, government-funded public works projects to build affordable housing, daycare centers and other services, creating jobs and meeting our needs.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

Workers and farmers produce fabulous wealth—more than enough for everyone on the planet to live well. The Communist League promotes all struggles that help working people gain confidence in our own capacities to fight to change the world. Organize for union jobs and $15 minimum wage now! I invite everyone to join the picket lines of Okanagan casino strikers. Speak out against Jew hatred, join actions to defend immigrant rights, and defend women’s right to choose abortion. As we act in our own interests, workers will create the conditions for winning the fight for affordable housing, too.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

Independent working-class political action is a burning need. There is no shortcut: unions must lead a social movement for decent health care, adequate pensions, housing. In the course of revolutionary struggle workers in Canada are capable of developing the courage and class consciousness necessary to do what fellow working people did in Cuba in 1959: overturning capitalist rule to bring workers and farmers to power. The crisis of the rulers’ capitalist system is tearing their “world order” apart today and this opens political space for our struggles. The Communist League campaign starts with this world. Read http://www.themilitant.com

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

The Communist League stands with working people confronting the ruinous consequences of Washington’s wars supported by Ottawa. Ottawa should get their military out of Iraq, Latvia and Mali. The rulers should end their sanctions against Iran, Russia and Korea. These assaults abroad are an extension of their attacks on working people at home. Working people and our unions should answer capitalist rulers’ trade and tariff disputes by reaching across borders in a fight for jobs for all. Every youth and working person who likes this perspective should join us in campaigning—365 days a year! Contact cllcVancouver@fastmail.fm

Tim Ly (edited to meet word count requirements)

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

When Vancouver founded, only 1000 residents. Including foreigners now approaching 1 million. Nearly thousand folds! All zonings in need of review. Not 1 policy fits 99% families!
Housing has been a major concern but all parties did little over 30 years. Ten years in power, the current party has not acted but rushed into actions days before elections.
The True Leadership for Vancouver commits to 4-step Direct Democracy, monthly Meet the People, Citizen Advisory Office, See-Thru Government & Meet the Press. These processes will consult citizens properly before adopting policies reflecting different characters, needs, affordability of neighborhood & residents.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

While reviewing the zonings, ease bylaws & lower license fees to immediately create new stocks. Lot housings are under use for different reasons. Identify these hidden stocks and encourage owners to rent. Subsidize those in needs to pay for available but unaffordable units.
Quickly review the zonings. To achieve a good long-term solution to housing, the Leader must focus on People -neither on any side nor special interests. He needs not knowing everything & provides all solutions. But by not being on any side, he’ll bring in experts right & left, developers & unions to find better solutions to all.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

Review all zonings as in q1 will increase stock: town houses, 2-4plex, co-ops, suites. This will result in affordable accommodations to renters but also help home owners to pay heavy mortgages. Developers prefer foreigners over locals for excessive profit. Control developers not owners: 60-70% units to locals, 30-20% Canada, 10% free. Violations = heavy penalties + strict permits. Better land use: 50+car parking go under/above buildings; turn low use complexes like Champlain, Oakridge malls into residence. Convert valuable water front lands being used by ports, railways & others into residence. More initiatives such as very affordable Buddy Ownership.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

To cure a sickness one must look deep into the roots. Housing, homelessness, transportation.. are consequences caused by political parties & politicians. They serve themselves, their clients, contributors, supporters, most influences, in that orders BEFORE serving common people.
The True Leadership for Vancouver is totally based on People -please read the manifesto enclosed. Few distinct differences: Meet the People , EVERY month he leads department heads to a different neighborhood to talk, listen to people, update issues; See-Thru Goverment, he EVERYDAY posts whom he sees & what about; Citizen Advisory Office, neighborhood volunteers & workers work closely with the City Hall.

Lawrence Massey (edited to meet word count requirements)

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

I do not support such widespread rezoning. The fact that 99% of property has been rezoned could point to a rather indiscriminate process. It is my opinion that in matters pertaining to our architectural heritage and the housing of our population we should be taking a slower and more cautious approach on rezoning to properly protect our citizens. I am sure that the previous group had their own personal reasons for initiating such a widespread rezoning but to me it feels a bit reckless. As a born and raised Vancouverite I would be more cautious when making decisions.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

I would like to start by freezing the prosecution of Vancouverites already marginalized and pushed out of their homes. Many of us have been forced into the street already and are living out of our vehicles or are camped in the back yards of kind community members. For those of us that keep this city going, fast food chain employees, construction workers, hospitality industry employees, the worry is not necessarily of a rent increase but of bylaw officers pushing us out of the makeshift shelters we have been marginalized into. 

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

The housing is already here the trouble is that it is mostly vacant. Few of today’s property owners seem to be interested in renting to the Van city community displaced. I would like to affect an empty homes tax increase of 5% and put housing the community back in the best interests of the rich that are currently pushing us out en mass. This is our home and we deserve a place in it.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

The most important thing in this city and indeed the whole universe is the balance of all life. We may neglect it but it will come as a grave consequence to future generations. Vancouver’s population represents many of the world’s elite. I would like to use every tool at my disposal to have people remember the value of life and to work towards balancing our beautiful biosphere from the top down to the smallest bacterial life forms before it is too late for all of our selves.

Rollergirl (Angela Dawson) – did not respond by deadline

Satwant K Shottha (edited to meet word count requirements)

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single-family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

I believe city needs to approve mid to high-rises on all the main roads and duplexes on side streets. It will give people more choices.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

It’s hard to put all the land lords/tenants under one law. It depends on case to case basis. if the building is purchased at a lower cost/ running costs are low as well, rent should be lower as well, but if the costs are high, rent can be higher.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

City should support citizens who own the land to get together with other citizens without home ownership to build a shared low/high rise homes or single homes on shared lot, instead of allowing developers to take over the city and sell at high cost.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

I was harassed and threatened at the city by my director. I went to HR, but issue wasn’t dealt with in timely manner. I was having panic attacks. She was threatening to spread rumours about me with a male director, because I asked him to give me some space during a panic attack. Instead of dealing with the issue, city told me that I have mental illness. They paid 5 managers hush money, hired another director (kept the previous director) with $200,000.00 per year pay, and hundred and thousands of dollars on investigations, mediation and more.

Ken Sim

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

Essentially what happened is that the Vision-dominated council rammed this through, at the very end of their mandate, so they could avoid public questioning. This is a huge change that will fundamentally change how our city looks. We need to do a better job of city-wide planning, and that starts with being open and transparent, at the neighbourhood level.

Our housing plan calls for immediately allowing two secondary suites in every detached home. For renters, this brings up to 40,000 new units within reach. For homeowners, this means new options to pay their mortgage.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

Too many Vancouverites are considering moving away from Vancouver. This is crisis that requires immediate, bold action. Under an NPA Mayor and Council, we will immediately allow two secondary suites in every detached home.

We will also fast-track housing for low-income Vancouverites, vulnerable seniors, and people with disabilities; reduce municipal taxes, fees, and charges for laneway homes and new secondary suites that house long-term renters; renew outstanding co-op rental leases; and designate City-owned lands for constructing attainable rental accommodation.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

Our plan to allow two secondary suites in every detached home is a step that we can take immediately to bring more supply onto the market – and can go a long way to keeping families together.

We also believe that the housing development process has gotten too political, and we will stop the practice of city planning based on developer cash contributions. This means that city planning will be driven by the needs of its residents, not development revenues. We will also speed up the permitting process, establish a policy for displaced tenants, and start working together with neighbouring municipalities.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

One thing we are extremely concerned about is how small businesses are being forced out of business. This is happening all over our city and it is draining our neighbourhoods of their vibrancy. And this is not just a quality-of-life issue, it’s also a major economic problem because we are bleeding jobs, and forcing some of our best and brightest to leave. We should celebrate and protect our independent businesses. We will address this by making small business taxes more consistent, predictable, and fair; simplifying and accelerating new business processes; and developing a fast-track process for businesses in duress.

Kennedy Stewart

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

I feel that any re-zoning of this magnitude should have been left for the next council to decide and be accountable for. That said, I will work with the decision. I do support much of what was proposed.
Building more duplexes brings more affordable options for first-time homebuyers while retaining the character of our single-family neighbourhoods. I will also expand opportunities for more ground-oriented housing in our least dense neighbourhoods, including expediting the construction of triplexes and fourplexes on standard lots and removing barriers to converting large homes into multi-family residences.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

As mayor, housing affordability will be my number one priority – we need to make sure we have housing that’s affordable for everyone.

• 25,000 new non-profit, affordable rental homes over the next ten years for those households making $80,000 a year or less, and more non-market and supportive housing for our most vulnerable citizens.
• Fast-tracking 25,000 new purpose-built market rentals and laneway homes.
• A new renters’ advocate office for renters who need information, advocacy, and legal assistance during tenancy disputes and renovictions.
• A new rental housing office to streamline the rental development process for purpose-built rental.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

We need to rapidly increase the supply of affordable housing in Vancouver. I’ll immediately get to work by:
• Using new rental zoning powers to secure rental housing developments.
• Working with senior levels of government to secure long-term housing funding and bring back tax rules to encourage rental construction.
• Speeding up the permitting process by increasing staff and reducing red tape.
• Building 85,000 homes over the next 10 years including 25,000 affordable rental units run by non-profits, 25,000 market rental units, and 35,000 new condominiums, coach houses, and townhouses.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

Trust and accountability in government before, during, and after civic elections.
We need to end anonymous advertising. Candidates, parties and third-party advertisers all need to disclose where their donations are coming from.
Our elections also need to be fair and democratic. Our current at-large system lacks community representation. I promise that this election will be the last under this system.
Finally, voters need to have confidence that city staff and politicians don’t have conflicts of interest. I will prohibit elected officials and key staff members from accepting government contracts or lobbying for 12 months after leaving their positions.

Shauna Sylvester

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

The current “Making Room” plan approved by City Hall emerged in the final month of the Council’s’ mandate with little direct consultation. While I am in favour of gentle densification throughout the city, I would not have voted for the plan unless there was an explicit affordability mechanism included. As outlined in my housing platform, we need to shift the conversation from simple supply to providing homes that the people of Vancouver need. Without ensuring that affordable, purpose-built housing is included in this plan, I am not confident that we will be making progress towards affordable housing.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

The current near-zero vacancy rate has created a crisis for renters. In my housing platform, I committed to achieving a 3% rental vacancy rate, and have committed to building affordable, purpose-built housing by leveraging City land and assets. I have also committed to working with the non-profit, co-op and co-housing sector to build new affordable spaces, and will renew leases on all existing co-ops. I will also advocate that any allowable rent increases be applied to the unit, not the tenants.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

As Mayor, I will work with the community housing sector as partners to build new affordable spaces. I will leverage City land and assets for purpose-built, affordable housing and redevelop and create more co-ops and co-housing developments.. I will cut red-tape at City Hall for homeowners who build affordable rental homes and I will work with the federal and provincial government to deliver 2800 new units at shelter rates devoting 1000 of those space to women. I will also ensure that we work with residents to complete community plans across the rest of the city.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

We need a holistic view of affordability. As Mayor, I will be working to introduce gentle densification, in keeping with the character of neighbourhoods, and will move density away from arterials so that local businesses are relieved from mounting financial pressure. To support employees, I will work with churches, unions and businesses to create housing authorities to enable service and retail workers and first responders to secure affordable rental and home ownership in this city. I will also improve transit service and infrastructure.

John Yano – did not respond by deadline

Wai Young

The current City Hall has just approved a new zoning policy that will permit duplexes in 99% of single family neighbourhoods, do you support this decision? If yes, is this enough to increase density, and if no why?

Coalition Vancouver is against the “Making Room” policy. We believe this policy is based upon a flawed, or ideological, understanding of our housing problem. It is a sell-out policy by Vision Vancouver and others tied to Developers, which will drastically change the character of existing neighbourhoods. Unlike other parties, Coalition Vancouver has no ties to developers or big business.
Coalition Vancouver and Wai Young will rescind this vote based upon clear conflicts of interests that specific Councillors were under the day this ‘lame-duck’ Council recklessly voted on this motion.

With Vancouverites expecting rental hikes next year, and vacancy at record lows, what will you do for renters to make it more affordable to stay in the city?

On the short-term Coalition Vancouver supports the zoning of 1 additional rental unit per stand-alone home and a laneway house in neighbourhoods that support it. This will immediately ease the pressure…
We will be making parking free after 8 PM, free all-day Sunday. By lowering taxes and fees on day one (including costs to access Parks Board facilities) we be making it less expensive to live in our City.
Over the longer-term, Coalition Vancouver is committed to ensuring purpose-built rental, and co-op housing are a priority.
We have the plan, and we will deliver on it.

Housing affordability is already at a crisis point, and with the challenge of a growing population, what are your solutions for creating more housing?

Affordable housing is essential. Therefore, we will not sell any City land – not a single square foot – to rich developers, for redevelopment as luxury condos. Instead, we will work with builders and government agencies to construct reasonably priced rental housing. Moreover, the Coalition will dramatically boost supply of compact, affordable units, built near major transportation links. We call this ‘Millennial-Plus’. These units will be tailored to the needs of young professionals, and first-time buyers – those who dream of having their ‘own place’. It’s a ‘path to ownership’ for the forgotten middle class. We’ll have a similar program for seniors.

What issue – not covered above – are you hoping to address in your community?

We will launch the Clean City program, covering everything from needles in parks, to overstuffed public trash cans, to graffiti. Working with businesses, communities, and citizens, we will ensure our streets, parks, and opens spaces are clean and safe. We will launch a ‘Mutual Respect’ plan to keep roadways clear, commerce flowing, and the public safe. We’ll keep the Georgia and Dunsmuir viaducts (instead of wasting $4.5 billion on their demolition). We will end the ideological war on transportation. That means no new bike lanes.

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