UDI Logo

Municipal News- District of North Vancouver

January 1, 2000

February 7, 2023

Development Variance Permit Delegation 

At Council on January 23rd, amendments to the Development Procedures Bylaw and Fees and Charges Bylaw received First and Second Reading. An amendment to the Non-Statutory Public Consultation for Development Applications Policy was also approved conditionally, should the bylaw amendments be adopted. Proposed changes include: 

  • Amendment to the Development Procedures Bylaw to establish procedures for the delegation of DVPs to the General Manager of Planning, Properties & Permits; 
  • Amendment to the Fees and Charges Bylaw to add a new reduced fee for delegated of $645 (2023 rate); and
  • Amendment to the Non-Statutory Public Consultation for Development Applications policy to public notification to abutting land for delegated DVPs. 

With these changes, District staff anticipate that the processing time for delegated Development Variance Permits (DVPs) will be reduced from 26 weeks to approximately 20 weeks or less, which would mean a 23% average increase in processing efficiency. This streamlining of the review process for minor variances is an initial step towards improving process efficiencies as the District launches its Development Application Process Review. It is recommended that these changes be reviewed one year following adoption of any bylaw amendments. 

More information can be found in the staff report here

 

2023 Housing Initiatives 

At Council on January 23rd, a report on the District’s 2023 Housing Policy Initiatives was received for information. This included an update on various housing policy initiatives underway, and a summary of estimated timelines in 2023. 

Some specific housing initiatives proposed to be continued and advanced in 2023 include: 

  • Financial Analysis for Affordable Housing 
    • Continuing research on viability of providing affordable housing as a component of new market residential development; 
    • Includes review of CAC Policy and DCC Bylaw to provide clear expectations for developer contributions where affordable housing provided; and 
    • Staff to provide CAC introduction session to Council in Q1 2023 and discuss options for updating CAC policy. Complete review of development program will be brought forward in Q2 2023. 
  • Development Approvals Process Review 
    • As part of OCP Action Plan implementation, DAPR in planning stages, anticipated to commence early 2023; 
    • End-to-end process review from preliminary development enquiries through to occupancy permit stage; 
    • Objectives to enhance current processes and streamline projects that advance OCP implementation; 
    • Staff will be referring bylaw amendments for Council consideration (Jan 23 meeting) to seek authorization to delegate consideration of minor DVPs to staff; and 
    • Initiate work in Q1 2023 on DAPR and report back to Council in 2024 with recommendations and proposed next steps. 
  • Residential Rental Tenure Zoning Analysis and Options 
    • Financial analysis underway to understand potential impacts of RRTZ on existing PBR projects; 
    • Completion of analysis anticipated early 2023; 
    • Findings from analysis, in addition to Council input and additional research, will inform next steps; and 
    • Staff to report back to Council on analysis and proposed next steps in Q2 2023. 
  • Housing Needs Report Update 
    • As result of concerns regarding age of data used in HNR (2016 Census), prepare an updated report sooner than legislative requirement of two years; 
    • Done when 2021 Census data and custom datasets available (approximately Q4 2023 or Q1 2024); 
    • Staff initiate work in Q4 2023 to update and report back to Council with recommendations and proposed next steps; and 
    • Noted in staff report November Province introduce Housing Supply Act. 

 

January 10, 2023

UPDATE: 2023 Fees and Charges 

As noted in previous UDI newsletters, the District is updating its fees and charges, in addition to utility rates for 2023. At Council on December 12th the proposed changes were adopted, with an effective date of January 1st, 2023. 


 

November 29, 2022

2023 Utility Rates 

At Council on November 21st , proposed changes to the Waterworks Regulation Bylaw, Sewer Bylaw, and Solid Waste Collection and Service Fees Bylaw received First, Second, and Third Reading. This would result in a 6.2% increase in rates for multi-family homes. The increases are largely driven by Metro Vancouver’s liquid waste treatment costs, and an increased contribution to the sewer reserve to provide stability from future Metro Vancouver rate changes. District staff will be completing a utility rate study early in this Council’s term to integrate results from Metro Vancouver’s long-term financial planning, and ensure equity between the District’s customer classes. 

The full staff report can be read here

 

2023 Fees and Charges 

At Council on November 21st, proposed changes to the 2023 Fees and Charges Bylaw received First Reading (Second and Third Reading were pushed back to the December 5th Council meeting to give the new Council more time to review the proposed changes). 

Proposed changes to development and permitting fees include: 

  • A corporate search fee included under Building Permits and Tree Permits, similar to the fee under Development Applications; 
  • A limit of 1.5 hours added to the fee for reviewing of alternate solutions on any single building permit item. Any item requiring more than 1.5 hours of review would be considered “complex” and require additional research or submission to the appeals board; 
  • Gas permit fees being reduced to $0 for decommissioning and existing gas installation for switching to electric heating in existing residential buildings; 
  • Increasing fees related to engineering construction of roadway restoration, sidewalk, curb and gutter installation; 
  • A new fee related to District-administered peer review of registered professional reports or qualified professional reports, where required, to be charged based on cost in development applications; 
  • Fees for preliminary applications being reworked to increase the initial fee to be more in line with other development application fees (set at half of the Rezoning Base Fee); 
  • A new fee proposed for rezoning inquiries that require an OCP amendment, or if the District deems it necessary that an Early Input Report to Council is required; 
  • A fee for subdivisions, creating new lots, or applications for phased strata plans, being increased to allow for an extended timeline. 

The proposed changes would be effective on January 1st, 2023. The fee schedule of exceptions to the 5% increase in fees can be found in more detail on page 6 of the staff report.  


 

October 18, 2022

UPDATE: Development Cost Charge Bylaw 

As noted in previous newsletters, at Council on October 3rd the inflationary updates to the Development Cost Charge (DCC) rates were adopted. This results in a 18.7% increase following “Vancouver All Items CPI” from April 2018 to June 2022. The effective date for the new DCC rates is January 1st, 2023.  

UDI will be looking to engage with the District as it conducts a full review of developer contributions, including both DCCs and Community Amenity Contributions, in late 2022 or early 2023 (subject to Council’s strategic direction). 


 

September 20, 2022

Development Cost Charge Inflationary Update 

On September 19th, a report went to Council regarding an inflationary update to the Development Cost Charges Bylaw. The DCC rates were last amended in April 2018 and the proposed amendment results in an 18.7% increase following “Vancouver All Items CPI” from April 2018 to June 2022. The proposed effective date for the new DCC rates is January 1st, 2023. 

UDI provided feedback to District staff in a letter submitted on September 16th. 


 

July 12, 2022

Climate Ready Rezoning Policy 

On July 4th, Council approved the Climate Ready Rezoning Policy. This policy will account for embodied carbon of new construction, and provide minimum levels of mechanical cooling and air filtration in Part 3 buildings, effective August 1st, 2022.  

Updates include: 

  • Applicability to new rezoning applications for Part 3 buildings, as defined by the BC Building Code; 
  • A set expectation that rezoning applications for new Part 3 buildings report refrigerant and embodied emissions of the proposed buildings, and describe specific measures explored to reduce embodied emissions. Disclosure of embodied carbon emissions and of measures taken to help reduce these emissions will increase understanding of the impact of these emissions and provide a foundation for target setting and future performance based regulations; 
  • Establishing minimum Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) 13 filtration levels for new Part 3 buildings to reduce impacts to indoor air quality; 
  • A set expectation that all residential dwelling units within new Part 3 buildings be equipped with mechanical cooling capable of maintaining an indoor temperature of 26 degrees Celsius or less, with windows closed. Applicants are encouraged to maximize passive design strategies such as exterior shading to minimize energy consumption and to provide a degree of protection from overheating during power outage events. 

The policy will apply to new detailed rezoning applications submitted on or after August 1st, 2022, however, exemptions will be permitted for in-stream applications as described in the policy. The full staff report and policy can be read here


 

May 31, 2022

Proposed Policy Updates for New Buildings

The District of North Vancouver is consulting on the attached upcoming requirements to “… address embodied carbon, indoor air quality, and extreme heat weather events in new buildings.”

Regarding embodied carbon, there will be a reporting requirement for rezoning applications over 100 m2 of floor area. Applicants would be expected to report the life-cycle emissions of a project’s structure/enclosure and refrigerants as well as “… describe specific measures explored during design to reduce embodied emissions.” Another requirement for rezonings of projects greater than 100 m2 is installing air filters with a designated efficiency equal are better than MERV 13.

Finally, the District is proposing a Construction Bylaw amendment for those utilizing the Energy Step Code Low Carbon Energy System compliance option. The District will be aligning their definition of a “Low Carbon Energy System” with West Vancouver. Proponents would need to “… design mechanical space heating and hot water systems to achieve a system seasonal average Coefficient of Performance (COP) greater than 2,”so heat pumps would likely be necessary.

Staff will be going to Council in June/July of this year with these proposals and are seeking comments by June 10. If you would like to provide comments to the District or have further enquiries, please contact them at building@dnv.org, or contact Heather Park at 604.661.3034.

 

June 29, 2021

Residential Tenant Relocation Assistance Policy (RTRAP) Approved

The District has revised and approved its new Residential Tenant Relocation Assistance Policy (RTRAP), which was last updated in 2018. The new framework is based on the work of the District’s Rental, Social, and Affordable Housing Task Force and a review of tenant relocation policies in other jurisdictions.

The RTRAP now applies “… to all rezoning applications that require the demolition of any building or combination of buildings containing five or more rental dwelling units occupied by renters …”. This includes single family homes, strata units operating as rental units, and purpose built rental units. It does not apply to “… tenants who move into an existing vacant rental dwelling unit after submission of a Detailed Planning Application …,” although these renters need to be notified of this.

The policy now includes requirements for proponents at the Preliminary Planning Application Stage as well as the Detailed Planning Application Stage and after Rezoning approval. In terms of financial assistance, proponents have to offer tenants:

  • The equivalent of four months’ rent (either by cash or free rent or a combination of both as the tenant prefers) to each tenant household;
  • A residency bonus in the form of an additional $35 per month for each month the tenant has resided in the building; and
  • Assistance with moving expenses …”.

The maximum rent for the replacement units should “… be no more than the greater of 10% above the tenant’s current rent or 10% above the most recently published CMHC median rent level, by number of bedrooms, for Metro Vancouver …”. There is also a first right of refusal. If rental units are built, tenants are allowed to return at the same rent or “… 20% below the market rent set for the units, whichever is higher.” For strata units, tenants are to be offered the units “… with a 5% purchase price discount.” The District has also increased the time remaining tenants can stay in a building after a Demolition Permit has been issued to six months.

If you have any questions regarding the changes, please contact Heather Park at hpark@udi.org.

 

June 15, 2021

Updated Energy Step Code (ESC) Requirements

As noted in previous newsletters, the District of North Vancouver is updating its Energy Step Code requirements which will be coming into effect on July 1 – as noted below:

The District has written to UDI to update the industry on the implementation of the policy. They want to monitor the effectiveness of the new regulations. As such, for Part 3 projects there will be an energy benchmarking administrative requirement and for Part 9 buildings there will be a labelling requirement. The details are included in the letter to UDI. The requirements are similar to those in Richmond, Surrey and Port Moody.

The letter also includes information on CleanBC incentives for Part 9 homes for up to $15,000 in rebates. Staff also note that there are Part 3 incentives as well. More information on the ESC requirements are available on the District’s website, along with information on their Community Energy and Emissions Plan. Questions can be directed to building@dnv.org.


 

May 18, 2021

Official Community Plan (OCP) Review

The District of North Vancouver is conducting a targeted review of the 2011 OCP. They have released a number of White Papers, including:

There are several Potential Actions in the White Papers, including:

  • Reviewing parking requirements;
  • Pre-zoning land for housing;
  • Allowing more row homes and townhouses;
  • Mandating more family friendly units;
  • Developing new density bonusing and/or inclusionary zoning requirements;
  • Creating “… a development evaluation checklist or scorecard to guide decision-making on proposed developments;”
  • Advancing “… low carbon, compact, and ‘complete’ town and village centres …;”
  • Approving “… developments in the Town Centres and …,” leveraging them “… to provide sustainable transportation infrastructure and transportation demand management;”
  • Protecting tenants and purpose-built rental buildings through municipal bylaws, including strengthening their Residential Tenant Relocation Assistance Policy, developing rental replacement policies (including utilizing the Residential Rental Tenure Zoning power) and updating the Standards and Maintenance By-law;
  • Reviewing the Community Amenity Contribution Policy “… to ensure the District is capturing maximum value;”
  • Working with developers to improve the sidewalk network;
  • Conducting an Employment Lands Strategy Study to review how industrial lands are and should be used and the types of uses along retail strips;
  • Conducting a Commercial Study that would encompass office, retail and service commercial to “Determine if current planned residential densities and development patterns are sufficient to support local-serving commercial uses in the Town Centres and along commercial corridors,” and to “ Review and update land use regulations to encourage/require new multi-family developments to include work-share space in addition to or in lieu of traditional amenities …;”
  • Reviewing incentives for preferred forms of development;
  • Conducting a review of the District’s development review process; and
  • Establishing a Building Retrofit Program.

The District did review whether or not to develop a District Energy system to reduce Greenhouse Gas emissions, but it found this approach is not “… viable or feasible …”.

Please also see an August 2020 Stakeholder Workshops Summary Report, and a January 2021 Social Equity Lens Paper. If you have any questions or concerns, please email communityplanning@dnv.org, or contact Cassandra McColman at UDI.


 

April 20, 2021

Draft Revised Residential Tenant Relocation Assistance Policy

The District is revising its Residential Tenant Relocation Assistance Policy (RTRAP), which was last updated in 2018. The new proposed framework is based on the work of the District’s Rental, Social, and Affordable Housing Task Force and a review of tenant relocation policies in other jurisdictions.

The draft RTRAP  would apply “… to rezoning applications that result in the demolition of any building or combination of buildings containing more than four dwelling units occupied by renters …”. This includes single-family homes and strata buildings with renters as well as purpose built rental units. It would not apply to “… tenants who move into an existing vacant rental dwelling unit after submission of a Detailed Planning Application …,” although these renters need to be notified of this.

The draft policy includes requirements for proponents at the Preliminary Planning Application Stage as well as the Detailed Planning Application Stage and after Rezoning approval. In terms of financial assistance, proponents will have to offer tenants:

  • The equivalent of four months’ rent (either by cash or free rent or a combination of both as the tenant prefers) to each tenant household;
  • A residency bonus in the form of an additional $35 per month for each month the tenant has resided in the building; and
  • Assistance with moving expenses …”.

The maximum rent for the replacement units should “… be no more than the greater of 10% above the tenant’s current rent or 10% above the most recently published CMHC median rent level, by number of bedrooms, for Metro Vancouver …”. There is also a first right of refusal component in the draft. If rental units are built, tenants would be allowed to return at the same rent or “… 20% below the market rent set for the units, whichever is higher.” For strata units, tenants would be offered the units “… with a 5% purchase price discount.” The District is also proposing to increase the time remaining tenants can stay in a building after a Demolition Permit has been issued to six months.

If you have any comments regarding the proposals, please contact Cassandra McColman at 604.661.3032 by April 26. If you would like to directly respond to the District, please do so by end of day on April 29 via email at planning@dnv.org.


 

March 9, 2021

Updated EV Charging Requirements

The District of North Vancouver is updating the District’s administrative policy on Electric Vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure for new developments. The update requirements are generally consistent with neighbouring municipalities in Metro Vancouver; including the City of North Vancouver and the District of West Vancouver. A summary of the updated requirements are listed below:

The District intends to approve these policy changes, as outlined in the report to Council dated February 22, 2021, as an interim step to completing a broader review of EV charging requirements for all land use types and consideration by Council of these requirements through proposed zoning bylaw amendments in 2021. Proposed bylaw amendments will consider emerging best practices and all input will be considered and provided to Council. Input can be considered for future updates to the administrative policy, as well as the longer term approach to EV charging in the District.

If you would like to provide your comments on the updated requirements, or would like further information, please contact the District via email at planning@dnv.org with the subject line ‘Updated EV Requirements’ by March 15, 2021.

Existing EV charging infrastructure requirements are available on the District’s website:

https://www.dnv.org/property-and-development/supporting-electric-vehicles


 

December 15, 2020

Energy Step Code Update

On December 7, District of North Vancouver Council gave final approval to an amendment to the municipality’s Construction Bylaw to increase the Energy Step Code requirements for new buildings. The changes will be: for Part 9 – Step 5 or Step 3 with Low Carbon Energy Systems and for Part 3 – Step 4 or Step 3 with Low Carbon Energy Systems. These changes will come into effect on July 1, 2021.


 

August 11, 2020

UPDATED: BC Energy Step Code

As noted in previous newsletters, the District of North Vancouver is reviewing its approach to the ESC to reduce Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions. As recommended by UDI and other stakeholders, they are seeking to align their changes with the other North municipalities (i.e. West Vancouver and the City of North Vancouver).

Staff are proposing that the current ESC requirements be “… amended to provide a two-tier low carbon energy system option to incentivize reduction in GHG’s from new buildings while enabling builders to construct at a lower step of the Energy Step Code,” as noted in the table below:

Other local governments have adopted similar approaches to incent the construction of buildings with lower GHG emissions, and UDI has supported this ‘two-tiered’ or ‘step-down’ optional approach. Under staffs’ proposals, all Part 3 residential buildings would have to meet the higher ESC steps – not just those where a rezoning is required. The District is also increasing the requirements for new Part 3 commercial buildings and is considering mandating Step 1 for commercial buildings undergoing “significant renovations”. Finally, Public Sector buildings will also have ESC requirements.

The District is seeking comments from stakeholders by September 18, 2020, and UDI will be submitting a letter. If you have any questions or comments please provide them to Marissa Chan-Kent by September 14. She can also be reached at 604.661.3033. Please see the letter and full report here on the proposed ESC changes from the District of North Vancouver.


 

June 16, 2020

UPDATED: BC Energy Step Code

Further to the updates provided earlier this spring, and the letter that UDI wrote to the District of North Vancouver regarding proposed Energy Step Code changes, the District has confirmed that a revised Step Code approach will not likely occur in early 2021, rather that the initially proposed mid-2020.

Staff have indicated that they are exploring options including a “two-tier” or “step-down” approach, which has been implemented in other municipalities in the region. UDI will continue to participate in ongoing consultation with the North Shore municipalities as they align their approach to the BC Energy Step Code.


 

March 25, 2020 

See here for the latest updates on COVID-19 from the District of North Vancouver

March 13th Joint Statement on COVID-19 response planning across the North Shore https://www.dnv.org/news/joint-statement-covid-19-response-planning-across-north-shore


February 11, 2020

UPDATED: BC Energy Step Code

As previously mentioned, the District is considering changes to its Energy Step Code requirements for Part 3 and Part 9 buildings as part of its Community Energy and Emissions Plan (CEEP). UDI submitted a letter as part of the consultation period.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact Cassandra McColman at 604.661.3032.


 

January 28, 2020

UPDATED: BC Energy Step Code

On December 2, 2019, the District passed a Community Energy and Emissions Plan that included a path forward for the applying the ESC in the community. They would like to “Phase in the BC Energy Step Code to reach higher steps in the mid-2020s and phase out fossil fuel dependency by 2032,” in the building sector. This year, the District is considering the following changes to their ESC policy:

  • “Moving from Step 3 to Step 4 for Part 9 residential buildings;
  • Moving from Step 2 to Step 3 for Part 3 residential buildings (The District currently requires Step 3 only if a rezoning is required);
  • Moving from Step 1 to Step 2 for Part 3 commercial buildings (New construction);
  • Moving from no requirement to Step 1 for Part 3 commercial buildings (major renovations); and
  • Moving from no requirement to Step 1 for schools, libraries, colleges, recreation centres, hospitals, and care centres.”

UDI will be providing comments to the District regarding the proposals on February 7, 2020. If you have any questions or comments, please contact Cassandra McColman at 604.661.3032.


 

December 23, 2019

BC Energy Step Code

The District passed a Community Energy and Emissions Plan (CEEP) on December 2, 2019. As part of the CEEP, they are seeking to increase the Energy Step Code (ESC) requirements in 2020. This includes mandating Step 4 for both Part 3 and Part 9 buildings (see table below):

The District is requesting comments from stakeholders and the public by January 22, 2020, and UDI will be responding because higher ESC steps are being proposed without incentives. If you have any comments or questions, please contact Marissa Chan-Kent at 604.661.3033.


 

September 30, 2019

Advisory Design Panel Opportunity

The District of North Vancouver is reaching out to UDI Members in search of a new Development Community Representative for the Advisory Design Panel (ADP) for the 2020-2021 term.

The ADP reviews development applications and public projects against urban design objectives. The Panel advises Council and staff on the design of projects, including site layout, exterior design of proposed buildings, choice of building materials, and landscape design. Comprehensive feedback is provided on each proposal to help ensure new buildings fit the local context, and support the community.

In the past the District of North Vancouver has used the following requirements for selection:

  • Representative of the Development Community
  • Resident of the North Shore
  • Is not a member of Council or an employee of DNV

Note: A representative of the local development community and may include an employee of a development company, a developer, or a project manager.

If you are interested in this opportunity, please apply directly to the District of North Vancouver by Wednesday October 2nd at: https://app.dnv.org/CommitteeForm/Default.aspx


 

April 1, 2019

North Vancouver District Council Cancels Another Affordable Housing Project

North Vancouver District Council has reportedly cancelled another non-profit housing project which would have provided much needed rental housing for people on disability or income assistance, low-income seniors and youth. At the suggestion of the previous Council, Hollyburn Family Services had applied for provincial funding of the project, which the non-profit spent about a year and a half working on according to Hollyburn Family Service’s Executive Director, Nanette Taylor. “I’m very disappointed in the new district council.” Taylor said. “We’ll probably look at a different municipality.”


 

March 4, 2019

Upcoming Council workshops

On March 4, 2019 the District of North Vancouver will hold a Council workshop to discuss key issues, including the Official Community Plan (OCP). In a presentation to Council, District Staff will present option for a review of the current OCP, originally adopted in 2011. The agenda and presentation can be viewed here.

A second workshop will be held on March 5, 2019 to discuss development contributions (DCCs and CACs), and revenue generated by these fees. The agenda is also posted on the District of North Vancouver’s website.


 

February 18, 2019

Updated: Upcoming Council Workshops

Due to poor weather conditions, the District of North Vancouver has rescheduled a Council Workshop, on the Official Community Plan. This will now be combined with the Community Engagement Steps workshop on February 20.


February 5, 2019

Upcoming Council Workshops

The District of North Vancouver will be holding three open Council Workshops in February on topics related to development. If any of the following topics interest you we would encourage you to attend:

February 4 – Transportation Infrastructure

February 11 – Defining Terms (of Affordable Housing)

February 20 – Community Engagement Steps


 

January 21, 2019

Pace of Development Workshop

On January 14, the District of North Vancouver held a Pace of Development workshop to discuss ongoing projects in the District. City staff made a presentation to Council and there were discussions on the direction that Council would like to take going forward.


 

December 10, 2018

Rejected Project Applications

Earlier this month UDI and the GVHBA submitted a joint letter to the District of North Vancouver Mayor and Council, urging them to reconsider two rejected project applications. The rejection of these much-needed housing projects raised concerns over the municipality’s willingness to partner with home builders to deliver the added housing options that our communities desperately need.


 

October 15, 2018

Community Energy & Emissions Plan Survey

The District is in the process of developing a Community Energy & Emissions Plan (CEEP), and they have released a survey and are seeking responses by October 19. The survey covers a number of issues, including:

  • Electric Vehicles;
  • The Energy Step Code;
  • Recycling;
  • Road Pricing;
  • Improvements for transit users, cyclists, and pedestrians; and
  • Compact Communities/Transit Oriented Development.

Featured Events

Book Club: Dare to Lead

February 8 @ 5:00 pm

Hosted by the Women of UDI, join us for an in-person discussion about Dare to Lead by Brené Brown over...

Read More

UDI Luncheon: Mayor Ken Sim, City of Vancouver

February 16 @ 11:30 am

We are excited to welcome Mayor Ken Sim of the City of Vancouver for his inaugural address with UDI. Join...

Read More

Leader Profile & Networking: Seasons of Change

February 28 @ 5:00 pm

What can we learn from past economic downturns and how can we guide our present and future career and personal...

Read More
View All

© Copyright 2023 URBAN DEVELOPMENT INSTITUTE