Backyard Suites Design Guidelines to go to Public Hearing at January 14 Council Meeting

On December 20, 2018 by Ben Morin

The Backyard Suites Design Guidelines team presented their work to the Standing Policy Committee on Planning and Urban Development. You can watch the video here. The Backyard Suites section begins at 1:33:38.

Background Information

In March 2018, Council approved secondary and backyard suites as discretionary uses for remainder of the primarily single-detached home land use districts. Administration was asked to do more work to make sure that backyard suites fit better in the community. Administration focused on:

  • Building separation from the main residence
  • Height transitions
  • Privacy and Screening

Community engagement included an online survey, two initial workshops in the spring of 2018, and two follow-up community workshops in fall. As a result of the engagement, the Federation wrote a letter of support.

Administration’s Recommendations

The recommendations include two components – the first addressing land use bylaw rules relating to issues such as building size and building location. The second component is the policy to guide discretion for secondary suites and backyard suites. The policy can be found here and the visual how-to guide can be found here.

Next Steps

The Committee received administration’s report and are recommending that Council adopt the proposals at the January 14 meeting. There will be a public hearing component for the Land Use Bylaw amendment portion. Council will also be looking at three additional parking policy options for relaxations, and we will update you in early January once we have more information.