Municipal News- Township of Langley
September 16, 2019
Willoughby Arterial Roads Completion Amenity Policy (WARCAP)
On September 9, 2019 Municipal staff presented a draft policy to Council for the proposed accelerated completion of arterial road sections in the Willoughby area. Staff will now begin public consultation on the proposed changes, and current dates are listed below:
Date: Saturday, September 28
Time: 10:00am – 2:00pm
Location: Mountainview Alliance Church (7640 – 200 Street)
Date: Tuesday, October 1
Time: 10:00am – 4:30pm
Location: Fourth Floor Foyer, Langley Civic Facility (20338 – 65 Avenue)
Date: Thursday, October 3
Time: 1:00 – 8:00pm
Location: Fourth Floor Foyer, Langley Civic Facility (20338 – 65 Avenue)
A public survey will be made available at the events and online following the first event. Further details including the full proposed Policy can be found at tol.ca/warcap.
UDI and HAVAN will also be consulting with staff through a dedicated subcommittee. If you have questions or would like to provide comments please contact Cassandra McColman.
September 3, 2019
EV Charging Proposal
UDI and HAVAN submitted a joint letter to the Township of Langley regarding their residential electric vehicle charging proposals following a stakeholder workshop earlier this summer. Township staff have considered several of the recommendations in their report to Council with the proposed requirements and will be providing a technical bulletin following the adoption of the bylaw. We will continue to provide updates when the report is brought to Council at the end of September.
August 6, 2019
ESC Tours and Workshops
The Township of Langley presents a series of Energy Step Code Demonstration Home tours and workshops. In partnership with Clay Construction, BC Hydro, and City Green, these interactive workshops will take place at an active construction site to demonstrate techniques and training to achieve Energy Step Code requirements. Register for one or more workshops by visiting tol.ca/stepcode. Space is limited.
All workshops are eligible for CPD credits through BC Housing. Workshops take place on an active construction site. Personal protective equipment will be required to be provided by attendees.
August 20, 2019, 9:00am-12:00pm
August 21, 2019, 8:00am-11:00am
August 21, 2019, 12:00pm-3:00pm
August 27, 2019, 12:30pm-3:30pm
June 24, 2019
Electric Vehicle Charging Requirements
As noted in previous Newsletters, the Township of Langley has been considering electric vehicle charging (EVC) requirements for a year. A report went to Council in July 2018 on the issue. On June 6, staff held a workshop on their proposals and provided a presentation to stakeholders. Like many other municipalities, the Township is recommending, “Parking spaces with EV charging requirements shall feature an energized outlet capable of providing Level 2 Charging or higher …”. However, they are also allowing Electric Vehicle Energy Management Systems to be deployed, which should mitigate some of the infrastructure costs. The specific proposed requirements are:
- Single-family Homes – 2 spaces per dwelling unit;
- Townhouses – 2 spaces per dwelling unit, plus 10% of dedicated visitor parking spaces;
- Apartments – 1.0 space per dwelling unit for studio apartments; 1.5 spaces per dwelling unit for apartments having one or more bedrooms; and 10% of dedicated visitor parking spaces;
- Commercial/Industrial – 1.5 spaces per dwelling unit;
- Seniors’ housing – 1 space per 4 dwelling units; and
- Community care facilities excluding seniors’ housing – 1 space per 4 occupants/residents.
If you have any comments or questions, please contact Cassandra McColman at 604.661.3032.
CORRECTION: DCC Report Land Use Categories
As noted previously, the Township of Langley has released its DCC report on rate increases. Unfortunately, there was a mistake in the table provided in the Township’s report which indicated that the Land use categories of Residential 2, 3, and 4 were classified in units per ACRE. This is not correct and the text of the report should read units per HECTARE.
The Township has also provided clarification on grandfathering for in-stream actions. There are two ways a developer can qualify for the ‘old’ DCC rates:
- Pursuant to section 511 of the LGA (subdivision). By way of a summary: if the new DCC Bylaw is adopted after a subdivision application is submitted and the applicable subdivision fee is paid, the new DCC Bylaw has no application to the subdivision for 12 months after the DCC Bylaw is adopted. As such, if the subdivision is approved during the 12 months’ grace period, the ‘old’ DCC rates apply. – **only applies in cases where DCCs are levied at subdivision**
- Pursuant to section 568 of the LGA (building permits). By way of a summary: the new DCC Bylaw is not applicable to a construction, alteration or extension if: (a) a building permit is issued within 12 months of the new DCC Bylaw adoption, AND (b) either a building permit application, a development permit application or a rezoning application associated with the construction (defined as “precursor application”) is in stream when the new DCC Bylaw is adopted, and the applicable application fee has been paid. **the development authorized by the building permit must be entirely within the area subject to the precursor application**
The above is a summary of sections 511 and 568 of the LGA and not an interpretation or an explanation of these sections. Developers are responsible for complying with all applicable laws and bylaws and seeking legal advice as needed.
If you have any questions please contact Cassandra McColman at 604.661.3032.
June 10, 2019
UDPATED: CAC Increases Effective January 1, 2020
The Township of Langley has amended its CAC policy that was previously updated last summer. The new rates will come into effect on January 1, 2020 and will be phased-in with quarterly increases instead of the standard one-year grandfathering applied to DCCs. For rezoning applications received prior to July 23, 2018 will have a 12-month grace period to receive Final Reading (to be completed by July 22, 2019), after which the grace period ends and CACs will apply. Applications received before July 23, 2018 and received Third Reading as of April 15, 2019 may seek an exemption from the Policy. All rezoning applications received after July 23, 2018 will be subject to CACs at the increased rates shown below. If you have any questions regarding these changes, please contact Cassandra McColman at 604.661.3032.
DCC Report Released
As noted in previous newsletters, the Township has been consulting with UDI on their DCC Bylaw Review for over a year through the Liaison Committee and a DCC Sub-committee. The increases were anticipated to be high because the last review of the program was in 2012. Land values alone have increased 200% to 400% since that time. As such, the proposed DCC increases range between 75% and 90%.
UDI recommended phasing the rates. However, staff and their consultant were concerned “… that a phased approach would negatively impact the DCC reserves. More specifically, by phasing in the rates, the Township could be foregoing approximately $12M in overall DCC revenues …”.
However, staff did agree to “… revisit the project list and consider eliminating projects considered not to be required until later stages of the Program …”. Because of this work, some projects were removed from the DCC program, and the residential rate increases were reduced from over 110% to between 86% and 90%.
To reduce the risk of substantial DCC increases in the future, staff are recommending that the DCC program be adjusted for inflation each year based on the Vancouver Consumer Price Index.
A report is going to Council on June 10. It is anticipated that the DCC Bylaw will receive first, second and third readings. It then needs to go to the Province for approval before final reading. Please see the proposed DCC increases below:
May 27, 2019
UPDATED: Motion on Proposed CACs for Increased Density via OCP Amendments
On May 13, the Township of Langley Council decided to refer the previously tabled motion (J.2) on a new CAC mechanism to capture added value from ALR exclusions and density increases achieved through OCP amendments. This motion has now been referred to staff for a report on the concept, appropriate legal process, and economic implication to the residents and the Township. Consultation would not take place until the report has been brought back to Council and no timeline was given for staff to complete the report.
April 29, 2019
UPDATED: Community Amenity Contributions (CACs)
As previously mentioned, on April 15, Council was presented with several motions regarding possible CAC increases.
The first a report and presentation that proposed a 20% increase in CACs was passed with amendments. Staff will now begin consultation on the proposed changes with stakeholders including the building industry.
The subsequent motion, a proposal to develop a new $200 million Willoughby Arterial Road Completion Amenity Policy was referred back to staff to provide a more detailed report. No policy changes were passed at this time.
The final motion regarding a possible new CAC policy for a land value capture mechanism was deferred to the next Council meeting which will take place on May 13th.
UDI remains concerned that the changes as proposed would significantly increase costs for builders in the Township and will continue to provide updates when these items return to Council.
April 16, 2019
Community Amenity Contributions (CACs)
On April 15, Council received a report and presentation regarding the Community Amenity Contributions Policy. In the Report, there is a proposal to increase the CACs by 20% in July 2020 after which staff propose to freeze contribution rate increases until 2022. Staff are also recommending that the Aldergrove Core Area be exempt from the CAC Policy. However, a new amenity policy would apply to the area. Staff recognize the need for consultation with the development industry regarding the changes before they seek approval from Council.
On the same day, two notice of motions regarding CACs are noted in the agenda. The first is a proposal to develop a new $200 million Willoughby Arterial Road Completion Amenity Policy that would use CACs to pay for completing the widening of 208th street.
The second CAC motion is:
“A. That staff be directed to report back and present to Council as soon as practical a new, draft, distinct Community Amenity Contributions policy for Council’s consideration with recommendations reviewing:
- mechanisms for the fair and reasonable capture of a portion of the significant wealth created by ALR exclusions, land rezonings and/or subdivisions with OCP and/or NP amendments for increased residential or commercial density;
- a fair and reasonable percentage of land value increases to capture, +/- 50%; and
- the potential impact upon development, scope of the policy, and potential revenue that could be generated for specific initiatives, such as affordable housing, recreation facilities, additional ice rinks, and/or an arts and entertainment theatre.
- That staff advise all proponents with current development applications that meet the above-noted criteria in A (a) of this potential policy adoption;
- That staff request all proponents with current development applications that meet the above-noted criteria in A (a) comply with this potential policy’s intent before their applications are brought forward for Council’s consideration, and advise of the proponent’s position within any staff report(s); and
- That staff complete and present their review and draft policy for Council’s consideration before any development applications that meet the above-noted criteria in A (a) are brought forward for Council’s consideration.”
UDI has several concerns about these proposals/motions, and will be raising them with staff and Council in the coming weeks. The Township, industry and public spent substantial time and effort establishing the current CAC program. In fact, staff note in their Report that “The timing of the proposed 20% increase to CACs comes shortly after adoption of the current CAC policy …”. These proposed CAC increases are also on top of substantial DCC increases that the Township is proposing to implement soon, the new TransLink DCC and 200% increases in Metro’s sewerage DCCs. We are also concerned that the land lift proposal does not follow provincial best practices and will lengthen processing times for applications. Neither motion identifies the need for consultation with industry, landowners and the public – despite the recommendations in the staff Report.
March 18, 2019
Updated: Fees and Charges
At the last Township of Langley Liaison Committee meeting in February, Township staff provided an approximate timeline for DCC increases this year. It is expected that rates will be effective by July 2019, however this bylaw change is subject to approval by Council, which could happen this Spring. As mentioned previously, increases will be about 80% on average, which was lowered from the previously proposed average rate increases of 110%.
The Township is also exploring a 20% CAC increase, to help finance an Aldergrove Core Area (ACA) Community Amenity Fund. The report by staff provides options for the exemption of the ACA from this fee increase and to change the 12-month grace period to a step-up approach. Staff recommend consultation prior to further consideration of CAC increases, and that any increases no be implemented before July 2020.
At the Council meeting of March 11, the Township’s Greenway Amenity Zoning Policies were formally updated to reflect rising construction and land costs. The base value for unimproved land used in the amenity cost calculation will increase from $1.2 million per acre to $2.8 million per acre. This will increase the overall fund that builders may draw on to construct greenway amenities.
Tandem Parking Requirements
On March 11, Township Council voted to change the tandem parking requirements for townhouses. This bylaw change allows for a maximum of 40% of parking spaces in a project to be tandem, which was reduced from 50% after discussion by Council. The changes are lower than the rate recommended by staff.
December 10, 2018
Energy Step Code (ESC)
In advance of the January 1, 2019 Energy Step Code adoption date, Township staff have been preparing for the transition to more energy efficient construction in the Township by integrating measures into existing submission, permitting and inspection processes.
On December 11, 2018 the Township will be hosting a builder forum to share information related to new requirements that residential builders will need to know for Energy Step Code implementation. The Meet and Greet event will take place between 8:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. at the Township Hall and is open to all residential builders.
November 26, 2018
Fees and Charges
At the November 22nd Langley Liaison Committee, the Township’s proposed DCC increases were discussed. As noted in previous newsletters, there has been an ongoing review of the Bylaw for over a year. In addition to Liaison Committee meeting discussions, the Township established a DCC sub-committee with industry representatives including UDI. The proposed average DCC increase was 110%. Staff have removed several items from the program to reduce the average increase to 80%. UDI has requested that the Township phase in the increases. It is anticipated the new rates will come into effect in the Spring.
At the same meeting, Township staff also announced that they are updating their Greenway Amenity policies because land costs have increased from $1.2 million per acre to $2.84 million per acre since the last review. Because of the rising land costs, the increases in the Greenway Amenity charges will be substantial. Staff anticipate going to Council in early 2019 with proposed new rates.
It is anticipated that there will also be updates to the Development Application Procedures and Fee Bylaw by the end of the year, which will include some minor increases in fees. The Liaison Committee supported the increases because it is being proposed that the funds from them will be used to improve development review resources. UDI submitted a letter supporting staff’s proposed changes in the Development Application Procedures and Fee Bylaw.
Energy Step Code (ESC)
Also at the November 22nd Liaison Committee meeting, Township staff updated UDI members on the implementation of the ESC in Langley. Starting on January 1, 2019, compliance with the ESC is required for all new building permit applications for residential buildings as noted below:
- “Step 1 is required for buildings (Part 9 & Part 3) not located within a Development Permit Area;
- Step 2 is required for buildings (Part 9 & Part 3) located within a Development Permit Area.”
Staff also noted that there will be an ESC educational session on December 11th between 8:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. at the Township Hall. For more information on the event, or to RSVP for it, please contact Robert Baker.