Hard Questions about Vancouver’s New Affordability Approach

What every candidate should be made to answer about the Making Room Housing Program.

Vancouver’s mayor and council recently approved the Making Room Housing Program, a push intended to quickly and pervasively introduce more affordable housing opportunities. The goal is laudable, but let’s pause a moment and ask some tough questions of this supposed fix.

After all, it appears to mean a fast move towards sweeping new zoning without meaningful stakeholder consultation, nor related economic analysis. Some players in the market will reap millions from these immediate “zoning gifts.” Will such windfalls yield fair value for taxpayers and truly produce affordability?

Ensuring that Making Room works for all Vancouverites requires a deeper understanding of what is at stake. Here are four tests we would apply to the proposed program — and we challenge every mayoral candidate to say whether or not they embrace the same.

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