A report on streamlining and improving the development process in Langley Township was approved by council and may become official policy in the near future.
On Monday, July 27, council received an independent report by academics and students with the SFU urban Studies Program that looked into how the Township deals with development applications.
Before a house or condo project can be built, developers have to go through various official procedures, receiving building permits, rezonings, or for many sites, both.
Under the purview of the Mayor’s Standing Committee on Development Management Process Review, the new report made dozens of recommendations across four major areas.
The key areas are:
• Relieve pressure on Township staff
• Streamlines the process
• Update policy, and
• Focus on innovation
Each section had multiple more specific recommendations. A majority of council voted Monday to send the report to Township staff for a review of the costs of the recommended changes.
The report compared the Township’s processes to those of Surrey, Abbotsford, and Coquitlam. Along with Langley Township, they make up the four fastest-growing municipalities in Metro Vancouver, and all are suburban communities that are seeing more and more multi-family housing being built.
The report noted that between 2009-2018, fewer than a quarter of new housing construction starts in the Township were single-family detached houses. The bulk were condos and townhouses, and that this proportion is expected to increase as the land becomes more expensive.
Mayor Jack Froese said he hopes the report will allow the Township to streamline the process and save time and money for developers.