Program Overview and Draft Policy & Framework
The purpose of the Community Amenity Contribution and Inclusionary Housing Program is to provide guidance and to establish a transparent, efficient, balanced and predictable process by which the District can receive amenities from development.
Through the Program development, a Community Amenity Contribution and Inclusionary Housing Policy has been drafted. These draft documents are available via the links, below:
- CAC Policy [PDF - 2 MB]
- Framework for Negotiating CACs [PDF - 2 MB]
- FAQs [coming soon!]
Upcoming Public Engagement – Get Involved!
As part of the Program’s broader public engagement, two public open houses (one virtual and one in-person) will be held and a community survey made available. We hope to see you at these events, and to hear your feedback!
COMMUNITY SURVEY – Now Closed
Community input is invaluable as we move forward with this strategic initiative. Please contact Alanna McDonagh, Senior Planner, at firstname.lastname@example.org, with any additional feedback.
Open House Presentation - April 18, 2023
Wednesday April 19th
- Virtual Open House
- 6:00 – 8:00 pm
- ZOOM MEETING LINK: https://urbansystems-ca.zoom.us/j/68664124367
- Meeting ID 686 6412 4367
- Short link http://bitly.ws/BEXI
Thursday, April 20th
- In-Person Open House (Drop in)
- 5:30 – 8:00 pm
- Garth Homer Society, 813 Darwin Avenue, Saanich BC
The Community Amenity Contribution and Inclusionary Housing Program is currently nearing the end of phase four (see the timeline, below).
In later April, with the conclusion of public engagement, Staff and the consultants will make refinements to the CAC Policy and accompanying documents and prepare an engagement summary. It is anticipated that the Community Amenity Contributions and Inclusionary Housing Program will be presented to Council for consideration in the late Spring, 2023.
The goals of this Community Amenity Contribution & Inclusionary Housing Policy are:
- To encourage new development to make contributions towards public benefit amenities and services to support new residents.
- To maintain a healthy community, through Community Amenity Contributions (“CACs”) and Density Bonusing, so that Saanich residents have access to amenities within a livable and complete community.
- To encourage the development of new housing that expands options for housing affordability and accessibility.
- To strengthen the relationships between the District of Saanich, the public, housing providers, and the development community.
- To ensure that Community Amenity Contributions are clear and transparent.
- To ensure that the Policy’s framework creates an efficient and predictable process by which the District receives negotiated amenities.
Phase 2 Deliverable: Discussion Paper (Financial and Economic Analysis)
A key deliverable of the Community Amenity Contribution and Inclusionary Housing Program (Phase 2: Exploration and Analysis) was a comprehensive Discussion Paper, building off of earlier findings from the initial program phase.
The Discussion Paper provides a series of snapshot insights on the complexities of achieving public benefit amenities and affordable and supportive housing. The purpose of the Discussion Paper is twofold:
- To document key market, regulatory, and policy factors influencing the District’s Community Amenity Contributions and Inclusionary Housing approach(es).
- To present the District-wide financial and economic analysis on the ability of development projects to deliver amenities.
The discussion paper and financial analysis will provide more robust direction to District Staff and Council on how to adjust the Interim CAC Policy to be a more transparent, efficient, balanced, and predictable process. The Discussion Paper and a Discussion Paper Summary Memo can be accessed on the sidebar under ‘project deliverables'.
Program Email Notification
Opportunities for public engagement will be available as the Program is developed. Please sign up for our notification list to receive updates.
Saanich Council adopted an Interim CAC Policy on August 9th, 2021, to provide guidance on CAC negotiations (see details and links to the Interim CAC Policy, below). In November 2021, Saanich retained Urban Systems to lead the development of a comprehensive CAC and Inclusionary Housing Program, in partnership with Staff.
To ensure that the supply and quality of community amenities remain high, and that affordable housing can be developed more steadily, the District of Saanich commissioned the development of this formal District-wide approach to negotiating and receiving new amenities, cash-in-lieu contributions, and affordable inclusionary rental housing.
Public benefit amenity and affordable and supportive housing can be negotiated in the form of Community Amenity Contributions (CACs) through the rezoning process, and/or through Density Bonus Zoning through the Zoning Bylaw. The project will also consider Inclusionary Housing as a potential component to achieve affordable and supportive housing.
This Program aims to provide direction on priorities, processes and anticipated levels of contributions when negotiating public benefit amenities. An examination of available tools, economic data and community priorities will aid in the development of an approach that provides clarity on the expectations of applicants. By establishing a clear policy framework, the District will provide consistency and transparency for both the development industry and residents, and balance the financial impact of new development for the existing population.
On August 9, 2021 Council adopted an Interim Community Amenity Contribution Policy that provides guidance for community amenity contribution negotiations while the more comprehensive program is being developed. The policy informs negotiations through identifying the process, priorities, target contribution rates and exemptions.
Staff requested clarification from Council on the Interim CAC Policy at the June 6 and June 20, 2022 Committee of the Whole Meetings. At the later meeting, Council moved to amend the Interim CAC Policy to provide clarification on the extent of targeted CAC exemptions [refer to Section 6.4: (iii) and (iv)].
Specifically, the amended Interim CAC Policy [PDF - 337 KB] provides clarity that the targeted CAC exemptions will apply to developments, or portions of developments, that are within the OCP height maximum and the Uptown-Douglas Plan “base” building height.