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Skinny homes part of Edmonton’s housing solution

EDMONTON Edmonton homeowners now have two excellent new opportunities to make more out of their residential properties.

If you want more living space in your home, you’re not just stuck any more with developing your basement, or with building an addition, or with tearing down and building a bigger home.

Instead, you can now build a suite over the garage. Or, if you’re really ambitious, you can subdivide your large lot and build two skinny homes on the same land.

New rules passed by city council
cheap Michael Kors Monday state that homeowners in mature neighbourhoods with properties at least 50 feet wide can subdivide, with the old house getting torn down and with two houses on lots with widths as small as 25 feet getting built.

Of course, if you have these new opportunities for your property, so will your neighbours, and that has brought on a lot of anxiety.

At the city council meeting, many folks shared their fears about the changes. Some worried about new and unsightly rental communities of garage suites mushrooming up and lining Edmonton’s back alleys.

Others worried about the character of their now spacious, affluent neighbourhoods. These areas tend
wholesale Michael Kors handbags outlet to have big homes on monster lots, and the concern is the way of life will be threatened by an influx of intolerable skinny homes packed on subdivided lots, with far more people and traffic disturbing the current peace.

It’s safe
fake Michael Kors to say such fears are overstated. First off, any change is going to come slowly. Most homeowners aren’t going to want to get into the rental market by building a garage suite. For example, since 2009, when city council allowed for secondary suites to be built in the city’s 150,000 homes, only 1,500 secondary suite units have been approved.

When it comes to skinny houses, the economics of high end neighbourhoods with expensive homes don’t make them ripe for teardown redevelopment projects. Instead, skinny house redevelopment will spread slowly through older neighbourhoods. There will be no skinny boom.

All that said, these changes do make way for major change and some people in older neighbourhoods will take advantage.

Out of the city’s 150,000 residential lots, only 8,000 of them, zoned RF3, were previously eligible for subdividing. But there are 54,000 lots zoned RF1 that are 50 feet wide or wider in mature neighbourhoods. The supply of residential lots available for subdividing will now increase seven fold, said Scott Mackie, branch manager of city planning.

The bottom line in this is that when
Michael Kors handbags outlet it comes to any harm done to you if you come to live beside a skinny house redevelopment, nothing much changes from the status quo.

How so?

Homeowners already have the right to tear down their old residences and build massive new homes. These monster homes can take up 40 per cent of the
cheap Michael Kors outlet lot. The skinny homes will be allowed to take up 42 per cent, almost exactly the same. A monster home can block out some of your sunshine or a new skinny home can, but the impact is the same.

The skinny homes also have to abide by the same rules in terms of being located 1.2 metres from the property line, the same minimum distance for a side yard that is currently allowed.

"You can build exactly the same volume right now on the existing RF1 as everything that’s proposed in this bylaw," Coun. Ben Henderson said during the council debate. "That’s what’s happening all over this city right now. We’re getting small houses taken out and great big houses being put in their place."

There’s nothing extreme
cheap Michael Kors or highly unusual going on with these new regulations, and any changes or issues that are going to arise will be outweighed by the benefits of increased opportunity for individual property owners.

There’s also the overall benefit to the city to consider. If all our new housing goes into new suburban neighbourhoods, that means more pressure to build and maintain new roads, schools, hospitals, police and fire stations. It means more car dependent suburbs and more traffic jams on our roads. None of that is welcome, but we can avoid it to some extent by
Michael Kors discounts building infill.

Our mature neighbourhoods need more people. They’ve lost 20 to 30 per cent of their population in the past four decades. Schools, roads, and sewers are already built
replica Michael Kors handbags but are often underutilized. More people in those neighbourhoods means more efficient use of that infrastructure. Delonna Sullivan died in April 2011, six days after the four month old was taken into foster care.

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