In a significant step towards fostering sustainable and efficient urban growth, the BC Government introduced a new proposed legislation to define and formalize Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) regulations. These new regulations, set to pass in early December, will help provide a clear framework for local governments to promote higher density around transit hubs, including rail stations, most SkyTrain stations and major bus exchanges.
“Transit-oriented development is crucial for the sustainable and efficient growth of our city,” said Anita Huberman, President & CEO, Surrey Board of Trade. “These regulations will help guide local governments in making responsible urban development decisions that prioritize transit access and minimize environmental impacts. We urge the BC Government to ensure that there is adequate funding for enhanced transit services in Surrey.”
“The Surrey-Langley-SkyTrain has had minimal construction, while the Broadway expansion, which was funded around the same time, has made substantial progress. In addition to that, major bus exchanges and more funding for transit and transportation infrastructure, in addition to skytrain, is integral to Surrey’s economic development.”
The primary focus of these regulations is to encourage the development of high-density residential and commercial spaces around key transit nodes, to reduce traffic congestion, promote public transportation, and support environmentally conscious urban planning.
In these designated TOD Areas, municipalities will be required to:
*permit housing developments that meet provincial standards for allowable height and density.
*have the minimum allowable height and density based on tiers – at its highest in the centre of the TOD Area – and will differ based on the type of transit hub (SkyTrain stop/bus exchange) and the size of the municipality.
*remove restrictive parking minimums and allow for parking to be determined by need and demand on a project-by-project basis.
*utilize standards and details in the provincial policy manual to provide consistency in the approach to developing TOD Areas.
· Early December: The province will release the implementation framework for municipalities.
· End of June 2024: Municipal governments must designate TOD areas with the assistance of a provincial mapping tool.
· End of July 2024: Legislation regulations must be enforced, including Official Community Plan (OCP) amendments to accommodate the TOD framework.
More information: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2023HOUS0063-001748
Anita Huberman, 604-634-0342, firstname.lastname@example.org