British Columbia’s local governments receive grants to speed up delivery of homes

Affordable Homes. Representational image by Marcus Lenk on unsplash

Vancouver/CMEDIA: A grant reportedly to create more efficient development approvals processes would soon be available to thirty-eight local governments of British Columbia.

“We’re leaving no stone unturned in our work…Local Government Development Approvals Program…improve the internal processes and development approvals…speed up the delivery of homes for people living and working in B.C,”  said Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Housing.

Administered through the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM), the Local Government Development Approvals Program was created to help local governments implement best practices in developing innovative ways to support non-profit housing organizations and to speed up the delivery of homes.

“Our province continues to grow with more people…We’re continuing to support local governments’ ability to move forward with housing…help new homes get built faster and more efficiently throughout the province for many years to come,” said Anne Kang, Minister of Municipal Affairs. 

The following projects exemplify how the program will help local governments meet housing needs in their communities:

Continuing to streamline approval processes for simple and complex buildings, the City of Burnaby includes developing business-process documentation and approvals guidance for staff and applicants, and undertaking change-management activities and building staff capacity.

To initiate a development-approval streamlining project, the District of Peachland, would coordinate with neighbouring communities across departments to improve the development-application process to increase consistency across jurisdictions, and reduce application delays.  

A pre-application process is being developed by the Regional District of Mount Waddington to make applicants aware of varying requirements needed for their applications so there is less delay when asking for information

Ways to improve and expedite the development-approval processes and bylaws to get more homes and businesses built within the community quicker, are being explored by the Village of McBride.

Approximately $4.4 million toward the 2024 intake program, provided by the Province was open to all municipalities, regional districts and the Islands Trust.  

With applications for the 2024 Local Government Development Approvals Program closing on March 8, 2024, to date, the Province’s Local Government Development Approvals Program has provided local governments with approximately $19 million to improve development programs.