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Controversial plan meant to shape Vancouver's future approved


A long-range plan meant to help shape Vancouver's future has been approved by city council.

The simply titled Vancouver Plan outlines the city's land-use strategy, and will be used in city planning looking ahead to 2050.

In an interview with CTV News about its approval, Mayor Kennedy Stewart described the plan as being "guided by the promise of making every neighbourhood more affordable, equitable and vibrant."

"Anybody should be able to rent in any part of the city and everybody should have an opportunity to buy in any part of the city,” Stewart said.

The plan sets in writing the goals of affordable housing options in walkable communities, according to the mayor.

Focuses include the city's "underutilized neighbourhoods," as well as increases in multi-family housing and more rental units on the market.

“There’s a lot of this city, say south of 16th (Avenue) that has been locked in for single family homes for a very long time,” Stewart said. “Vancouver Plan will change that and provide more rental and purchase opportunities.” 

The plan was made public in late June, ahead of a July presentation to council. Right before it was presented, the mayor decided to add controversial measures he said would amount to the "strongest renter protections in Canada." 

Critics slammed the addition, which was structured similarly to protections wedged into the also-controversial Broadway Plan

A city councillor said the add "caught us all by surprise," and said the measures were unrealistic

Under both city plans, tenants would have the first right of refusal to return to newly developed properties they'd been evicted from for renovations or new builds.

They'd be able to move in to the new buildings at the same or lower rent, and builders would be expected to front moving costs.

It's something that made some builders nervous, and Stewart himself admitted it could lead to developers needing to include more units in upcoming projects in order to recover those extra costs.

On Friday, the mayor thanked council for supporting those renter protections in its approval of the plan. Top Stories

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