Nearly three years following the City of Port Moody’s adoption of their new Official Community Plan, City Council will now be considering a new Community Amenity Contribution (CAC) and Density Bonusing policy for the City.
While development has stagnated for close to a decade in Port Moody (even following the 2014 OCP), the arrival of the Evergreen Line and various amendments to the OCP since, coupled with the current market dynamics has led to a more recent uptake in rezoning applications. This led City staff to put forward the idea of a CAC policy in the past year.
The new policies are broken down between Density Bonusing and CAC’s.
Density Bonus Program
The density bonus program will be implemented as an amendment to the Zoning Bylaw, and includes the following major points:
- The density bonus program applies City-wide, but is most often expected to be used in the Transit-Oriented Development Areas where higher densities will be concentrated;
- The density bonus will apply to any development with a density greater than 2.5 FAR
- applies only to residential gross floor area. It excludes all forms of employment-generating floor space
- does not apply to density used for low- and moderate-income housing since the City wishes to encourage these two types of housing, per the City’s Affordable Housing Reserve Fund Guidelines;
- the financial contribution to the City is 75% of the land value of the additional density above an FAR of 2.5 (the land value will be determined on a project-specific basis using an independent professional appraisal, commissioned by the City and paid for by the developer);
- in lieu of a financial contribution, the City may allow an amenity to be provided by the developer that is equivalent in value to the financial contribution.
Community Amenity Contribution Program
The City of Port Moody has never had a CAC policy although it does already have elements of a program in place including a public art contribution mechanism and the encouragement of developers to contribute toward the City’s Affordable Housing Reserve Fund. However, in the absence of specific policy, the amount collected has been negotiated on a project-specific basis and it has not been consistent (although it has generally been in the range of $2.00 to $3.00 per SF). The proposed CAC policy described below provides consistency and certainty for both developers and staff. It includes:
- the program will apply to all areas within Port Moody with the exception of the 215A Levy Area of Inlet Centre
- the CAC is set at $6.00 per SF of residential floor space being developed on a lot that is being considered for rezoning, to a maximum of $6,000 per residential unit (or per lot in the case of single family residential subdivisions);
- credit will be given for any residential floor space on a lot that is being either retained or demolished as part of redevelopment;
- the CAC program will apply to residential floor space up to a maximum density of 2.5 FAR, with any floor space above that subject to the City’s Density Bonus Program;
- the CAC will be allocated as follows:
- $2.00 to the City’s Affordable Housing Reserve Fund; and
- $4.00 to the City’s proposed new General Community Amenity Contribution Reserve Fund
Council may, at its discretion, waive some or all of the CAC as part of a rezoning where affordable housing or another public amenity is being directly provided by the applicant.