Municipal News- Township of Langley
April 6, 2021
Development Management Process Review Implementation and Costs
At the Township of Langley Regular Council Meeting of March 22 a report on the implementation and costs of Langley Township‘s Development Management Process Review was carried by Council.
Two main recommendations were made in the recent report.
- For staff to proceed with the next steps, as outlined in this report, to implement the recommendations of the Mayor’s Standing Committee on Development Management Process
- Bringing forward, where necessary, associated implementation costs for Council’s consideration of approval as part of the annual budget process; and That Council authorize staff to submit a grant application for up to $500,000 to the UBCM Local Government Development Approvals Program for improvements to existing municipal software and the purchase, installation, and training for digital drawing submission software.
The initial DMPR Report on July 27 contained 30 recommendations in four general areas:
- Workload Management: Relieve pressure on staff – Review staff workload
- Streamline Process: Improve consistency, clarity, and efficiency in process
- Policy Updates: Work towards policy-driven decision making
- Focus on Innovation: Continuous improvement and education
For more information on the next steps and on the recommended actions please see the Council report.
If you have any questions please contact Richard Demkiw
February 23, 2021
Green Buildings Update
On January 27 The Township of Langley hosted a virtual Builder Forum Series on Ventilation and Step Code. Township staff created a short report for the results of the survey attendees asked at the vent. For more information on the recent Builder Forum Series, please visit the links below:
Feedback survey results: link
Mentimeter results: link
Video of webinar: link
Webinar slides: link
January 12, 2021
November Builder Forum Series: Key Takeaways
On November 19, the Township of Langley hosted its first virtual Builder Forum Series on Heat Pump Best Practices and Airtightness Techniques. Township staff created a short report on the results of the survey attendees completed at the event (see the links below).
- Q&A: link
- Feedback survey results: link
- Mentimeter results: link
- Video of webinar: link
- Webinar slides: link
The Main takeaways from the webinar include:
- Heat pumps are amongst the most effective design options for facilitating Upper Step achievement
- It is important to understand the economics and operational limits of heat pumps
- Anticipated performance and cost savings have been over-hyped in the past, leading to both disappointment and a lack of trust in the equipment
- Proper mechanical design of a heat pump system and ongoing, reliable technical support when needed are key to a good installation and happy customer
- Recognize that Step Code requires airtightness testing, and there are levels of airtightness that MUST be met
- Have a plan from the start: which air barrier system to use and how best to implement the details
- Share knowledge with your Trades and collaborate
- Have your Energy Advisor perform mid-construction testing to check your progress
December 15, 2020
Soil Bylaw Amendment – Filling in Area Subject to Flooding
At Township of Langley Regular Council Meeting of December 7, a report to amend the ‘Soil Bylaw Amendment – Filling in Areas Subject to Flooding’ received, first, second, and third, reading. The report aims to provide clarity with respect to requirements associated with the deposit of soils, or other materials, in areas that are prone to flooding.
November 17, 2020
Builder Forum – Airtightness Techniques and Heat Pump Best Practices
The Township of Langley Green Buildings team is hosting a Builder Forum Series event on Airtightness Techniques and Heat Pump Best Practices on Thursday, November 19. This online webinar will explain airtightness techniques for meeting Steps 3, 4, and 5 of the BC Energy Step Code (presented by Einar Halbig of E3 EcoGroup) and heat pump best practices (presented by Mikhael Horvath of Enforma Engineering).
2 CPD credits are available through BC Housing conditional upon full completion of the course demonstrated by registering and signing in to the session.
2 Core LUs are available through the Architectural Institute of BC conditional upon full completion of the course demonstrated by registering and signing in to the session.
Date and Time: Thursday, November 19, 9:00 – 11:00am
Location: Online (link to be provided upon registration)
Who should attend? Builders, HVAC industry, construction industry, building designers, architects, and building officials
To register for the event please visit the following link: http://www.bit.ly/builderforum2020
Housing Needs Report and Action Plan
At the Township of Langley Regular Council Meeting on November 9th the 2020 Housing Needs Report and Action Plan was received by Council.
The 2020 Housing Needs Report projects a need for 6,260 additional housing units over the next five years, and identifies needs for affordable housing, rental housing, housing for seniors, and housing for families.
Staff recommended retaining the current maximum size for secondary suites of 120 m2, monitoring the floor area and number of bedrooms in new suites, and reporting back within three years with the results and, if applicable, further policy recommendations.
November 3, 2020
Tree Protection Bylaw
At the Township of Langley Regular Council Meeting on October 26, A one-year review of the Tree Protection Bylaw was received by Council. Council referred the report to the Tree Protection Advisory Committee for consideration of next steps, including amendments, for Council’s consideration of approval.
Council also referred two service enhancement requests related to the administration of the Tree Protection Bylaw to the 2021 budget deliberation process.
See the report here.
October 6, 2020
Climate Action Strategy
At the September liaison committee meeting, Township staff presented to UDI and HAVAN representatives on the development of a Climate Action Strategy (CAS). The draft strategy has over 140 different high-level goals to combat pollution and improve energy efficiency. This is a broad strategy and covers many mid-to-long term aspects of energy and emissions including:
- Energy Step Code implementation;
- Increasing resilience in existing buildings;
- Zero emissions corporate operations;
- Increasing the tree canopy and rainwater capture;
- Development of a transportation and mobility strategy;
- Ensuring new developments are EV-ready;
- Requirements for multi-modal infrastructure in all new ICI developments; and
- Advocating for the expansion of the transit network.
The above list is not exhaustive and each goal will receive dedicated consultation prior to and implementation or bylaw changes.
UDI will also be providing more specific comments in a letter, and if you would like to share your comments on the draft strategy, please contact Cassandra McColman.
August 11, 2020
Langley Township Development Management Process Review Update
On July 27th at the Township of Langley Regular Council Meeting of Council, a report from the Mayor’s Standing Committee Development Management Process Review was submitted. The report noted that development applications in ToL had increased significantly over the past few years, however, the number of staff in development services has not increased proportionately.
The report made several recommendations for council under the four headings:
- Relieve pressure on staff
- Streamline process;
- Update policies;
- Focus on Innovation; and
- The Mayor’s Standing Committee Development Management Review Report be referred to staff report back to Council to provide recommendations as to the implementation and costs of the proposed recommendations contained in the report.
To see the full report see here.
Please contact Richard Demkiw with any questions or comments.
May 19, 2020
UPDATED: WARCAP Report
On Monday, May 11, 2020, Council adopted the Willoughby Arterial Road Completion Amenity Policy. The Policy will become effective on August 11, 2020 and will be applied to in-stream applications. Applications that have received a public hearing or have had the public hearing requirement waived by Council will be exempt from the Policy.
For information on the Policy, please see the following:
- May 11, 2020 Willoughby Arterial Road Completion Policy Report (20-65) and attachments
- Willoughby Arterial Road Completion Amenity Policy 07-355
May 5, 2020
Changes to the Development Approvals Process
At the Special Council Meeting held on April 20, Township of Langley Council approved amendments to its development procedures to:
- Waive requirements for a public hearing for rezoning applications that are consistent with the OCP;
- Temporarily suspend the requirement of a Developer held Public Information Meeting; and
- Provide for written submissions, unless a public hearing is specifically required pursuant to provincial regulations.
These modifications will be reviewed by Council before the end of this year. To review the full report to Mayor and Council click here.
Step Code Demo Home- Videos now available
In August and December of 2019 the Township of Langley, in partnership with BC Hydro, hosted builder, realtor, and public education events at the Step Code Demonstration Home in Fort Langley. This Step 3 home, constructed by Clay Construction, showcased different construction techniques that can be used to build a highly energy efficient home.
Staff have created two videos summarizing the project and its energy efficient features. The 4-minute version is geared towards the public, giving a high level summary of what it takes to build an energy efficient home, while the 8-minute version goes more in-depth into the construction techniques and lessons learned from the construction team and industry professionals.
April 16, 2020
The Township of Langley Economic Development department has developed a new COVID-19 Resources for Businesses website http://invest.tol.ca/
April 7, 2020
UPDATED: DCC Bylaw Changes
The Township of Langley’s DCC Bylaw Item I.2 was given final adoption on Monday, March 23. As of March 23rd there is a one-year time frame for issued building permits. For the full report click here.
Please contact Richard Demkiw with any questions or comments.
UPDATED: Land Value Capture for Willowbrook (item D.2)
On March 23rd there was a Public Hearing for an amendment to the Willowbrook Community Plan to include a land value capture mechanism. There were no submissions at the public hearing. Subsequent to the public to hearing, there was third and final reading to the bylaw. Now that Council has approved the bylaw, the Township will be changing the Willowbrook Community Plan based on the amending bylaw. The update to the Willowbrook Community Plan (primarily around Willowbrook Mall and the surrounding areas) is expected to occur in 2021/2022.
The Township still needs to fine-tune the details of the bylaw. However, the ToL will use 2018 as the base year for the land value capture system, and they are planning a 75% Capture rate. There will be a component for public consultation.
See here for the link to the full report.
Green Building Presentation
Please see here the video and slides from the Township of Langley’s Builder Forum Series event on February 6th 2020, Building Envelope Energy Efficiency: How to Avoid Surprises presented by Hamid Heidarali.
The presentation highlights an approach to building energy efficiently with airtightness and thermal performance requirements of the BC Energy Step Code.
April 1, 2020
See here for all COVID updates from the Township of Langley
March 27th Township Council Passes 2020 Budget, Moves to Electronic Meetings https://www.tol.ca/news/budget-electronic-meetings-passed/
March 26th Public Notice: Township of Langley Council Procedure Bylaw 2016 No.5199 Amendment Bylaw5592 https://www.tol.ca/news/public-notice-bylaw-5592/
March 10, 2020
Housing Needs Report
In 2019 the Province introduced new requirements that local governments prepare and publish a housing needs report. On February 20th, 2020 the Township of Langley held a focus group and presented preliminary data findings for the Housing Needs Report (see here for the preliminary data findings). It is currently anticipated that the Housing Needs Report will be complete in July 2020, with a review and potential update of the Township’s Housing Action Plan to follow.
Neighbourhood Plans- Future Amenity Charge Proposals
At the Langley Liaison Committee meeting on February 27th, Township Staff indicated that they continue to working on updating the three Brookswood-Fernridge neighbourhood plans. Reports are expected later this Spring, which may include additional amenity charge proposals. UDI will continue to provide updates to our members when they are available.
January 28, 2020
On Monday, at the Regular Afternoon Meeting of Council Meeting, the Township staff presented to Council on the Willoughby Arterial Road Completion policy, for further consideration of previous staff reports and Council amendments (see agenda item D.1). More updates will be provided in future newsletters.
Please contact Richard Demkiw with any questions or comments.
In the Township of Langley Regular Afternoon meeting of Council, a revised DCC report was also presented to Council. Several projects were removed from the list that was previously approved by Council in June 2019 to comply with provincial DCC program requirements. The new increases proposed will be smaller than those previously considered, as identified in the table below.
This revised DCC Bylaw was passed with one amendment to add the 212 Connector from 208 Street to the edge of the Williams Neighbourhood Plan. It is expected that the Province will expedite the approval of this revised DCC report and we will continue to provide updates when they become available. The complete report is available here and if you have any questions or concerns, please contact Richard Demkiw.
December 9, 2019
UPDATED: WARCAP Policy
At the Township of Langley on November 2nd Regular Evening Council meeting, Council discussed the Willoughby Arterial Road Completion Amenity Policy (WARCAP). No decisions were made to move forward with WARCAP at this point in time.
Langley SkyTrain Transit Corridor Land Value Increases Partnerships
On November 2nd the Township of Langley Council discussed a motion on the Langley SkyTrain Transit Corridor Land Value Increases Partnerships (item M.3). The motion recommended that staff review consider and suggest the most appropriate process and timeline(s) to set a baseline land value in the Township of Langley, be it past and/or present to:
- Fairly capture up to a 75% share of the land value increases within the Township of Langley due to the adjacent or nearby transit infrastructure that is being contemplated and planned for the Willowbrook area;
- Prepare a minor, interim amendment to the Willowbrook Community Plan for Council consideration to outline the Township of Langley’s expectation to capture up to a 75% share of any lift in land value due to the transit infrastructure upgrades within the Willowbrook area that will likely be undertaken in some form in the future, subject to additional staff review and input to Council.
Council referred back to staff to study this motion further.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or comments
November 25, 2019
Energy Step Code Demonstration Home Series Engagement Opportunity
The Township of Langley is hosting the final event of Energy Step Code Demonstration Home Series on Tuesday December 10th from 6:00-8:00pm. Register now to secure your spot!
Date: Tuesday, December 10, 2019
Time: 6:00 – 8:00pm (four 30-minute time slots – 6:00, 6:30, 7:00, 7:30)
Location: 9187 Seney Place, Fort Langley
Format: Presentation and Home Tour
Audience: Public, Local Government Staff and Elected Officials, Interested Stakeholders
Presenters and Facilitators:
- City Green Solutions
- Township of Langley
- Clay Construction Representative
- BC Hydro
Community Amenity Contribution Policy (Exemptions) Update
For the Community Amenity Contributions Policy (Exemptions) Report it was initially recommended that a phased exemption provision be added to the CAC policy. This phased approach would give Specific In-Stream Applications an extended grace period to obtain final reading of a rezoning bylaw, with a reduction of the target contribution amounts.
However, in the November 18th meeting, Councillor Eric Woodward put forward a motion that passed, to amend the phased-in approach, with the changes below:
- Remove the 75% reduction period before December 31st, 2019.
- Amending Phase two 50% reduction to be prior to March 31st 2020, With no distinct phase one and phase two exemption periods.
Please see the original document here.
UPDATED: WARCAP Policy Report Received by Council
On November 18th Regular Afternoon Meeting, the Willoughby Arterial Road Completion Amenity
Council acknowledged that they have received the revised WARCAP policy report. The next step will be a Notice of Motion from a Council member providing direction. None so far has been received.
The revised draft policy highlights changes to:
- a refined scope, limited to 208 Street, 202A Street, 212 Street Connector and 80 Avenue;
- adjusted road widths;
- update the map of properties subject to a target contribution amount; resulting in
- re-calculate target contribution amounts.
In summary, “the revised Policy would, subject to Council’s consideration of adoption, include approximately 9.4 acres of land, with an estimated cost of $30 million and a target contribution rate of $35,293 per developable acre. This represents over 40% reduction in the amount of land and in the target contribution amount from when the proposal was initially introduced.”
The draft WARCAP program also states that the policy should be revisited after all land acquisitions have been made to determine the actual total cost, as there are variables that are unknown at this point.
Please see the document here.
October 29, 2019
Motion I.2: Consistent Adjudication of CAC Exemption Requests
On Monday October 21st, Councillor Woodward presented the following Notice of Motion regarding Consistent Adjudication of CAC Exemption requests within the deadlines according to Council Policy.
Council directed staff to consider to report back as soon as practical with potential revision of the CAC Policy 07-166,dated April 15th 2019 to:
A)Potentially implement a phased exemption approach similar in concept to Development Cost Charges (DCCs) but with graduated increases over time similar to the current CAC framework, a definitive sunset to the potential for exemption, and authority delegated to staff within clearly defined parameters and criteria;
B) To remove 5.4(f) as a potential condition by which development can apply to Council for an exemption from Community Amenity Contributions program
Willoughby Arterial Road Completion Amenity Policy
An Amenity Fee Policy has been proposed for the Willoughby area as a means to provide alternative financing of select major arterial roads in the community. This Policy is being proposed as a potential solution for completing road works ahead of development in Willoughby to relieve congestion in key areas. In response to the proposed policy, UDI submitted a letter to the Township staff making several recommendations. The letter was included in the Distribution to Mayor and Council on October 21st. For any questions or comments please contact Richard Demkiw.
Invitation – Focus Group for the Township of Langley’s Development Management Process Review
Dr. Meg Holden and Steven Kim are conducting a Development Management Process Review with the Township of Langley. The objective is to collect and analyze data in order to provide recommendations to the Mayor’s Standing Committee related to the business side, timing, and quality of service provided in the development management process in the Township.
They are currently looking to conduct a series of focus groups for architects, developers, and consultants currently working on development applications*, or having submitted a development application in the past two years, with the Township. They are happy to hear from those who qualify and are interested in participating.
Each focus group will be comprised of approximately 6-8 individuals, and will last about 90 minutes at the Langley Events Centre. There will be at least six possible weekday time slots in November that will be offered. Members can contact Meg Holden by email at email@example.com, or Steve Kim Langley_study@sfu.ca directly for an invitation. Refreshments will be provided.
Types of Development Applications include:
- Official Community Plan Amendment Rezoning
- Development Permit
- Development Variance
- Heritage Alteration Permit
- License Endorsement
- Agricultural Land Reserve Exclusion
- ALR Non-farm use
- ALR Subdivision
- GHG Emission Reduction
- Land Use Contract Amendment
October 15, 2019
Community Amenity Contribution Policy (50% Lift)
On October 7th Township of Langley staff submitted a Report titled Community Amenity Contribution Policy (50% Lift), to Council during the regular afternoon meeting (item F.4 on the agenda). This land lift provision would set target contribution rates at approximately 50% of the increase in land value. The proposal was passed and several considerations and recommendations were made, including:
- Consult with the community, including the development industry;
- Provide a reasonable notification period and a phase-in strategy to provide general notice and effectively exempt existing in-stream applications; and
- Incorporate the proposed policy into one of the existing CAC Policy or the proposed Willoughby Arterial Road Completion Amenity Policy (WARCAP), as appropriate, to consolidate and effectively combine associated policies into one for simplicity and administrative efficiencies.
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.