The City of Burnaby is the first municipality to take advantage of the new British Columbia rental zoning law.

The province now allows local cities to zone areas for rental homes and Burnaby passed a motion on July 23 asking city staff to implement a rental zoning bylaw.

It will ensure that all redevelopment of current purpose built market rental sites be required to include the replacement of the current number of units within the neighbourhood, and that they be rented at established, affordable rates, and be made available to current tenants.

“Burnaby has been a consistent advocate with asking provincial governments to invest in low-cost housing and give municipalities zoning for rental housing as a method to increase and protect the supply of rental housing in our community,” said Mayor Derek Corrigan. “We were optimistic when the new legislation came in about six weeks ago that allows us the tools to require older market rental buildings be replaced as part of any redevelopment. Previously, cities could only attempt to negotiate density in exchange for small numbers of market units, but now we will have the legislative authority to require the replacement.”

Currently, Burnaby is home to more than 5,900 units of non-market housing, 1,900 units of co-op housing, and 32,000 units of market rental.

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