Dec. 11, 2019 | Gerald Vander Pyl
Recent regulation change could increase housing development and diversity in flight-path communities
Recent changes to a provincial regulation could boost residential development and diversity in the communities of Mayland Heights, Vista Heights and Inglewood.
Amendments to the Calgary International Airport Vicinity Protection Area (AVPA) regulation that were made in October mean that property owners in certain areas under airport flight paths can now apply to add a secondary suite, subdivide a mid-block property to have two semi-detached homes or subdivide a corner lot to have four units.
"For us, it's a positive change as far as the association is concerned, and also from what we heard from residents," said Annette Bennett, president of the Crossroads Community Association.
Bennett says there are some ideal areas in those communities where additional development could increase housing density, including in Mayland Heights, which borders the Barlow / Max Bell LRT Station.
"We anticipate that the amended regulation will lead to an increase in low-density residential development and adding more housing diversity, which is what the City strives to do in our planning." - Melanie Bishoff, City of Calgary
She says the community association is working with a school of architecture on ideas for development in the Crossroads region and they are keen to see the results.
Amendments to the AVPA regulation were first considered by a city council committee back in 2016 to loosen the restrictions limiting housing development in Inglewood.
Melanie Bishoff, co-ordinator for centre west with the City of Calgary's community planning department, says the proposal was eventually broadened to include the two northeast Calgary communities that were also in a Noise Exposure Forecast (NEF) area.
"Previous to the amendments that were approved to the regulation in October, residential development was prohibited within the 30 to 35 NEF area," said Bishoff.
She says the City spent about two-and-a-half years working with the Calgary Airport Authority to come up with proposed changes, which eventually went to the provincial government and were approved.
"The goal for all of this was to support the continued growth of the airport and associated logistics hub, while recognizing its important role in the economic development of the City, as well as support continued growth and development in Calgary, specifically in these three communities," she said.
Bishoff says the amendments level the playing field for property owners in Mayland Heights, Vista Heights and Inglewood.
"While a similar community has been able to intensify and offer more housing options and opportunities, these three communities have not had the same opportunities because of this overarching regulation," she said.
"We anticipate that the amended regulation will lead to an increase in low-density residential development and adding more housing diversity, which is what the City strives to do in our planning."
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