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November 20, 2018

Concerns about rule changes for rental units to be heard in Halifax

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A city planner is reassuring residents of a Halifax neighbourhood worried about a proposal that would allow more rental units to be installed that their concerns will be heard.

Dean MacDougall, with the Halifax planning department, said the proposal to amend the land-use bylaw for the area bounded by Chebucto Road in the north, Flinn Park to the south, Roosevelt Drive to the west and MacDonald Street to the East is still in the early stages.

The amendment would allow applications for internal conversions that would increase the number of rental units in a given building if there was enough space.

There is a public meeting scheduled for 7 p.m. Wednesday in the Halifax Forum’s Maritime Hall.

MacDougall said the framework for the proposal is not built yet.

“I’m still doing my analysis (and) going to the public with this information and hearing what they would like to see,” he said in a recent interview.

“The meeting on Wednesday is really just me presenting to them what an internal conversion clause is, the definition, what it looks like elsewhere in the city and for the parameters around how it can be activated.”

In such a case, the age of the building is the major regulation involved, he said.

“It’s not for new construction, it’s for retaining the existing stock of building and allowing for stock densification by converting internally to allow for additional units, whether that’s two, three, four, five or six, I don’t know. And what are the triggers to allow six, we don’t know that quite yet. We’re still doing the analysis to figure out what would suit the neighbourhood, if anything.”

The area is made up of primarily residential dwellings with a mix of some stand-alone, single-unit homes and some small apartment buildings.

What restrictions will be set on any internal conversion for the neighbourhood are not determined yet either.

Keep reading in The ChronicleHerald


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