A missed opportunity: Ontario’s proposed inclusionary zoning regulations
Published on 29/01/2018
Submission to the Ontario Ministry of Municipal Affairs regarding the proposed regulations related to inclusionary zoning
In December 2017, the Ministry of Municipal Affairs published its draft regulations on the use of inclusionary zoning in Ontario. These regulations outline the extent to which municipalities can require affordable housing units to be built as part of residential developments.
Maytree’s submission highlights that there is only limited scope to build affordable rental properties under the proposed inclusionary zoning regulations and offers advice on how the government can maximize the potential for inclusionary zoning to deliver the affordable housing the province sorely needs.
Maytree’s proposed adjustments are modest in nature but could significantly improve the opportunity to create affordable housing in the province through inclusionary zoning and strengthen local decision-making on housing and planning issues. The submission proposes two adjustments in particular:
- First, that the province adjust the regulations to ensure that inclusionary zoning results in at least as many affordable rental properties as affordable ownership ones. This could be done, for example, by providing a policy framework and funding for the affordable housing created through inclusionary zoning to be owned and/or managed on a long-term basis by non-profits as affordable rental.
- Second, that the government remove the maximum set aside of 5 per cent of the total units (or 10 per cent of units in high density transit-station areas) from the draft regulations and allow municipalities to set their own maximums. Removing the maximum set aside gives municipalities more freedom to tailor their approach to local needs, makes them accountable to local residents for the housing that is built rather than the province, and spurs innovation as municipalities develop different approaches and learn from each other.