August 5, 2021
Council Highlights provide a snapshot of the progress made on City programs, initiatives and on Council decision-making. For more information on each initiative, please visit the accompanying link where noted. The items are selected highlights from the June 2021 Council Meetings. To review all the topics discussed, click here to see the full agenda and webcast.
PUBLIC HEARING: 425-475 Simcoe Street – Rezoning Application
Following a Public Hearing, Council voted to approve a Rezoning Application for 425 and 475 Simcoe Street. This application will allow for the use of storefront cannabis retailer.
PUBLIC HEARING: Gorge Waterway Park – Rezoning Application
Following a Public Hearing, Council voted to approve a Rezoning Application for Gorge Waterway Park to allow for public docks within the park in order to expand the existing swim dock.
PUBLIC HEARING: 1314 and 1318 Wharf Street – Rezoning Application and Heritage Alteration Permit with Variances
Following a Public Hearing, Council voted to approve a Rezoning Application and Heritage Alteration Permit with Variances for 1314 and 1318 Wharf Street. This application will allow for the redevelopment of existing heritage buildings and a residential, ground floor commercial, mixed use addition. Council also directed staff to bring forward an amendment to the Heritage Designation Bylaw to include the interior demising wall in the designation of the Frasier Warehouse building.
Pre-Application Community Consultation
Council has directed staff tobring forward amendments to the Land Use Procedures Bylaw to:
- increase the pre-application fees from $750 to $800 for rezoning applications where notice is given to owners and occupiers of properties within 100 metres of the subject property
- increase the pre-application fees from $1250 to $2400 for Official Community Plan applications where notice is given to owners and occupiers of properties within 200 metres of the subject property
In addition, the following amendments to the Land Use Procedures Bylaw have been approved, allowing retained flexibility to alter process during emergencies and revise the pre-application community consultation requirements that apply after the COVID-19 pandemic has ended, to require applicants to:
- install a pre-submission sign on site
- post plans to the Development Tracker (with an associated online form)
- attend an in-person and/or online community meeting, at the discretion of the Community Association Land Use Committee
Council Member Motion: Letter to Pacheedaht First Nation
The City of Victoria will write to the Pacheedaht First Nation acknowledging and respecting its right to govern its own assets, to reaffirm the city’s goal to engage in respectful and open dialogue towards reconciliation.
Report Back on Homelessness
Council received a report from a Homeless Advocate for information and endorsed a number of recommendations on homelessness including:
- Consideration for a full-time staff position in the 2022 budget with a focus on resolving systemic barriers to ending homelessness in the city
- Review the funding and services agreement with the Greater Victoria Coalition to End Homelessness and consider providing an equitable amount of funding to the Aboriginal Coalition to End Homelessness in the 2022 budget.
- Direct staff to report back with legal advice on amendments to the OCP to recognize “housing is a human right” as a guiding value and vision of the City of Victoria’s Official Community Plan.
- Investigate potential ways to include rentals which are affordable due to the age of the building in the city's affordable rental update, to ensure minimal loss of affordable rental units.
- The Mayor, on behalf of Council, will write to the Minister Responsible for Housing and local MLAs advocating for the Government of B.C. to establish a non-profit and co-operative housing acquisition strategy to be combined with tenant protections, to safeguard existing low-cost rental homes and expand the supply of deeply affordable housing
- The Mayor will also write to the CRD and CRHC advocating for the consideration of the inclusion of the acquisition and operation of older rental stock as part of future affordable housing initiatives.
Village and Corridor Planning
Council has directed staff to start preparing neighbourhood plans for Hillside-Quadra, North Park and Fernwood based on the emerging policy directions that came out of early engagement. The third and final phase of engagement will happen this fall.
Missing Middle Housing Initiative
Council has directed staff to undertake broad consultation regarding policy and regulatory and delegated process options for enabling missing middle housing and prepare amendments to the Official Community Plan (OCP) to better support missing middle housing forms.
Council Member Motion: Appoint Candidate to Police Board
Council has requested that staff begin selection of the City of Victoria appointee to the Victoria/Esquimalt police board. Applications are invited from all members of the public and equity seeking groups will be prioritized in Council’s selection.