Wednesday, May 10, 2017

The Sacred Single Family Home

Come on down, and join the throngs of people determined to eliminate the single family home.
Then we'll destroy capitalism!

The Sacred Single Family Home: What are we trying to protect and why?

With the interconnectedness of transportation and housing costs, is the concept of the “single family home” living in an (unaffordable) nostalgic past? How can we help facilitate more affordable housing while reducing environmental impact on the North Shore?

Join panelists Michael Geller, architect and developer, Krista Tulloch, member of the District of North Vancouver Official Community Plan Implementation Committee, Cameron Maltby, specialist in custom home design, and Neal LaMontagne , City Planner and Adjunct Professor at UBC and Langara College.

Wednesday May 17

7 – 8 pm, doors open at 6:30

Lynn Valley Village Community Room -1277 Lynn Valley Road, North Vancouver

Metro Conversations has partnered with SFU Public Square and the North Vancouver District Public Library to take on the 'burbs of North Vancouver: what are we protecting with the single family home and why? Doors open at 6:30pm.

Register here.


Anonymous said...

I suspect I am going to be brow-beaten for preferring a low density community.

Anonymous said...

You're fully entitled to that preference. But don't impose that preference on other home owners who might want something different.

Anonymous said...

I love sub-urban low density. Lived in it my whole life and will continue to do so as a retiree. Worked hard, denied ourselves luxuries, were damn lucky to live when we did and achieved a great lifestyle. Would we like the low density residential of the 60's, 70's and 80's to continue forever? Sure, but that isn't realistic with the increase in the population of the Lower Mainland. So, live and let live. Don't have a problem with higher density more urban enclaves that don't impact my neighbourhood.

Lived here 50 years but if it gets too congested and urban we will move away to continue our preferred sub-urban low density lifestyle.

"Destroyed paradise and put up a parking lot."

Anonymous said...

"You're fully entitled to that preference. But don't impose that preference on other home owners who might want something different."

But that's the part I don't understand. There are countless communities that have fully embraced density. You have options throughout the lower mainland. So why did you move to the DNV if you don't like low density communities? Did you move here so you could change it? Did you move here because you thought you could buy at low density, rezone, cash out, and leave? I understand if you grew up here and can't afford to buy a house, that is discouraging I know, but pretty much anyone else has some sort of perversion if they move to a place because they love it and then set about completely changing it. Councillor Matt Bond is only a recent arrival to the District of North Vancouver from Surrey (I think), but since day one he has been complaining about it and trying to change it.

As someone who has watched council proceedings in the District going back 15 years, overwhelmingly the people that were local residents and where cheerleaders for higher density where also planning on selling and leaving, making them conflicted to the hilt in my humble opinion.

Anonymous said...

So, you suggest all the other municipalities in the area absorb all the density and the DNV shouldn't take its fair share?

Anonymous said...

What I think Anon 11:06 is suggesting, is something like City of North Vancouver vs District of North Vancouver. The City has densified ( ruined ) its neighbourhoods and is now a different kind of place to live than most of the District is. If you want to live on the North Shore, and you want dense living, then the City is the place for you, not the single family neighbourhoods of the District. If there isn't enough space for those that want to live densely in the City then densify it some more. The idea that every neighbourhood must have every kind of accommodation merely turns every place into a dull sameness, and will degrade the quality of life in many instances. For example, I enjoy and value the views of the surrounding mountains while wandering about Lynn Valley. The ugly ( to me ) and intrusive towers of Seylynn and soon Lynn Valley Town Centre detract from the ambiance and sense of place to an overwhelming degree. I believe these towers have no business being there and the character of these neighbourhoods will soon be lost because of their looming presence and accompanying population. To me, that's not a wise use of the land.

Apparently, the prices the recent buyers in this area are willing to pay for single family living in a green area near the mountains and away from the dense crowds of, say, Metrotown suggest that they agree with me.

oh and one more thing....

"You're fully entitled to that preference'[density]. But don't impose that preference on other home owners who might want something different".

Anonymous said...

So the district has no responsibility to absorb population increase to the region. You've decided that the other municipalities need to make up for it and densify because your unwilling to accept your share? Single family homes on large lots are probably a more unwise use of land than multifamily housing.

Anonymous said...


"So the district has no responsibility to absorb population increase to the region"


NO district has such a responsibility. If the region is full then the region is full and people, maybe with the help of government, can reasonably expected or be encouraged to seek living space elsewhere in this nearly empty country. Remember that. Canada is practically empty. Rather than every neighbourhood having a responsibility to absorb population increase, I'd say that the provincial government maybe has a responsibility to recognize when that increase would be better served by living and working outside the region and that government should execute policy supporting that outcome. If Canada were not pretty much empty and instead all its regions were full, then I suppose there would be some responsibility to accommodate the increase by sacrificing neighbourhoods or to stop receiving the overflow from immigration. But we aren't there yet, not even close.

You can't buy a townhouse anywhere in Vancouver for $60,000. You can buy one for that, however, in, for example, the town of Mackenzie BC where there is employment, decent schools and a good life to be had. Young people ought to be heading there in droves. ( See MLS R2157579 or )

Here's another example:

The facility I used to work in has recently reorganized its operation and as a result a third of the people who were working there at the time, no longer had a job with the company. After reorganizing, there were too many workers for the jobs needing doing.
In your view of things, the company would have a responsibility to find things for the redundant workers to do, rather than help them find another place to work where their work was needed. That place might be with the contract drying company that has taken over their work or it might be outside Vancouver.

What's missing in your idea of things is the concept of 'full up'. There is no end, in your view, to the responsibility to accommodate anyone who happens to want to live around here. Once that responsibility is recognized, you densify. But once that extra density fills up, and the next increase in population arrives, you would say again that the already densified neighbourhood has a responsibility to further increase density to house the new arrivals and accommodate that growth, no? The problem is, that is infinite regress. It is an infinite growth system and is truly unsustainable. I'm not against specific areas being densified if its residents want to live like that but I am against expecting all areas to be densifying to embrace the bad results of adhering to a belief that we need to accommodate infinite growth equally everywhere.

Anonymous said...

(I'm 11:06)

I'm not saying no growth, but I don't have this misplaced sense of responsibility.

At its core, we have a tail wagging the dog problem here. Canada's growth, including both natural and immigration, has been consistently between 1% and 1.1% over the past 20 years. The growth should go where the jobs are going... has the District added 20,000 jobs? No, then why would we want to build for 20,000 commuters? If we have any real responsibility to accept some growth then it should be in line with Canada's growth at most.

Anonymous said...

We have the right of freedom of movement in this country. Some people seem to forget that. How many jobs are there for people in the great wide open of rural Canada?

Anonymous said...

Metro Vancouver population 2001 = 1,985,965
Metro Vancouver population 2016 = 2,463,000

Increase = 477,035 or 24%

Yes, 24%. The Real Estate Board of Metro Vancouver projects the population will increase by 30,000 residents per year, every year or 1.2 million additional residents for a total population of 3.4 million by 2041.

So today the region needs to absorb a 24% increase in population since 2001 and a 100% increase in population over 40 years. Millions of people. That's a lot. Think transit, roads, water, sewers, housing, hospitals and intense pressure on all services and amenities.

We will look back to our present housing costs, taxation levels, road congestion, hospital waits as the good old days.

Federal government projecting 300,000 immigrants next year with a possible increase to 450,000 per year over the next 5 years.

Statistics Canada states that Canada’s largest cities will continue to be the primary destinations for newcomers. In line with its 2011 estimate, the agency expects slightly more than 90 per cent of immigrants will live in metropolitan areas by 2036, with Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver remaining the cities with the highest proportions.

Given Stats Can's estimates, the Real Estate Board of Metro Vancouver population increase projections may be on the low side.

We are in a period of rapid population growth and general densification. Whether or not we live in a single family residence we will all be impacted by the coming tsunami.

Fasten your seatbelts.

Anonymous said...

The DNV voters have rejected significant growth time and time again. Feel free to run on it as a platform. Bonne chance.

If no new units are built people will still come to the region, but they will pay enough to attract someone to leave the region or enough for more single family homes to be attracted to renting out a suite. If businesses are driving the attraction then eventually they will pay the wages necessary to attract someone.

Some communities are fighting to get growth and renewal... let them have their day. We have far too many geographic bottlenecks on the North Shore for it to be an efficient source of housing.

Anonymous said...

One area where I wish the District would lighten up is on suite size. Suites are currently limited to the lesser of "90m² (968 sq ft) or 40% of your residential floor space". I have a house where it would make complete sense to split it with a 1,200 sqft suite and a 1,400 sqft principal residence. Why does the district care if I have more of my house dedicated to suite? It still clearly has a principal residence, so I don't get it.

Get rid of the arbitrary 968sqft requirement and you will see more legal suites enter the market.

Also multi-generational housing is a very important element for our community with the rising cost of housing. If the family is willing to swear an affidavit that they are not renting out the space, they should be allowed to have a second kitchen without requiring all of the other costly upgrades required for a secondary suite that would be of no value in a multi-generational housing space. In-law suites do not need separate heating systems, 5/8" fireguard, separated air, separated electrical, but a second range plug would be handy.

Anonymous said...

" but a second range plug would be handy"

Ahh so THAT's why the guy I bought my house from in '82 had a 110 volt stove in the basement!