(File Photo)

Esquimalt addresses the ‘missing middle’ in housing

Township developing guideines for multi-family housing

Esquimalt will address the need for multi-family housing using a $10,000 grant from the PlanH Healthy Communities Fund.

The funding will help the township generate guidelines for something it says it’s lacking: ‘missing middle housing’ that “fills a need between detached single-family homes and mid-rise condominium developments.”

Related: Affordable housing needs mandated policy: Victoria, Esquimalt councillors

“There’s lots of single-family housing and there’s lots of high-density housing but this middle part has kind of been missing. Now there’s a trend toward trying to encourage more townhouse development,” said Bill Brown, Esquimalt’s director of development services.

“Very few people can afford to buy a single family house anymore. This is a little bit more affordable and it’s not having to live in a big downtown tower,” he added. “This is a form of housing density that appeals to younger families.”

According to a release from the township, Esquimalt’s new design guidelines project will rely on research and public engagement opportunities to create a final report with “recommended policies and design guidelines for ground-oriented multi-family housing.”

The project will also look at ways for encouraging interaction and health in Esquimalt communities.

“[We] will look for ways to design this housing that encourages socialization…so people aren’t isolated.”

The guidelines are expected to be completed in fall, 2019 and will guide changes to the town’s Official Community Plan.

Related: Affordable housing project breaks ground in Saanich



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