What the Proposed Gonzales Neighbourhood Plan Means to You
Do you want this complex to be built beside your house?
With the new plan, it might be... along with many other types of development...
Aryze site plan May 18, 2018
(updated June 2018) - We have been told that City staff are currently working on providing a revised draft of neighbourhood plan by early July; the revised plan will be based on feedback to date (open houses, Town Hall, and the smaller group meetings with sub-area residents, as directed by Council).
Staff are also preparing a mid-level summary laying out key aspects of the revised plan, the process used to develop it and impacts to the community and land use designations. This summary should be mailed-out by early July.
There will also be a survey which will be open over the month of July and early August.
City staff then plan on doing additional workshops and small group meetings in key areas (Queen Anne Heights, Fairfield Road, northern and southern areas of the neighbourhood, etc.).
In August staff they will finalize any changes prompted by the last round of public feedback with the goal of having the plan back in front of Council by early September.
The Proposed Plan
The new plan:
Removes residents' ability to oppose unwanted types of development by dictating in advance where various types of buildings may be developed.
Proposes multi-story apartment buildings, and development of double rows of townhouses along Fairfield Road and other townhouses developments throughout Gonzales.
Increases housing density — doubling, and in some areas, quadrupling density.
A BC Assessment analysis indicates 7 out of 8 lots in south Gonzales could be zoned for duplex and triplex development with the new plan parameters.
Removes Richardson as a major transportation route, diverting traffic volumes to Fairfield, Rockland or Oak Bay Road.
Makes no provisions for schools, transportation, parks or other public infrastructure needed to support such an increase in density.
Encourages new development which will make our neighbourhood less affordable as the plan encourages replacement of affordable rental options with unaffordable new construction.
Read more about the proposed plan at the City of Victoria website.
The 2002 Plan
We believe our citizen-designed 2002 Gonzales Plan allows for gradual densification and renewal in a way that will not cause destabilization.
At the time, the 2002 plan was innovative because it increased green space while it allowed for:
small apartment conversions, and
small lot developments.
The 2002 plan emphasized the livability and affordability of the neighbourhood while allowing for densification and renewal of existing housing stock.
The City has recently adopted a policy of approving garden suites on most lots throughout Gonzales which has allowed for further densification and affordability. We are in favour of this modification to the existing plan..
This plan was so revolutionary it won an urban design award.
The new plan is a major departure from the original plan, and the reasons being given for the changes in the plan are not supported by the facts.
In 2002 Gonzales had 4% of the city’s population, in 2011 it had 5.2%
Between 1991 and 2011 :
Gonzales increased its population at more than twice the rate of Victoria between 1991 and 2011 (Gonzales 27% - Victoria 12.5%)
The number of single-family homes decreased dramatically from 74% to 54%
Duplexes and secondary suites increased substantially from 18% to 27%
Apartment buildings increased from 7% to 18%