I want Coquitlam to be a place of opportunity but it can’t be if people aren’t given the opportunity to live here – and raise their families here. It is extremely important to me that we do all that we can so Coquitlam remains an inclusive, equitable and prosperous city.
This means that we need to take action to ensure that appropriate housing is built. Some families may be able to purchase the extremely large home on a large lot but I think we serve our community better by incentivizing, in the appropriate neighbourhoods, large lots being split into smaller lots – that result in smaller homes. These homes for many will not be considered “affordable” but they are certainly more affordable than an extremely large home. I’d like to see the permitting process sped up for residents looking to subdivide so they don’t simply throw their hands up with impatience and build one large home instead of two smaller ones.
I fully support more town homes in the appropriate areas of our city. Town homes are less expensive than single family homes, are less expensive to heat and furnish AND as a bonus, help create a sense of community – which we can always use more of especially in housing that is targeted to attract families.
I have been speaking up and pushing back when multi-family development proposals don’t have 3 bedroom units or an acceptable quantity of 3 bedroom units – and I will continue to do so. More couples than ever before are going to be raising their families in condos and apartments and one and two bedroom units won’t suffice. I am passionate about ensuring there are enough “family-sized” units as well as appropriate amenity space within. When youngsters need to build a volcano for their science fair, where are the kids living in condos going to make theirs? In the common area amenity space! We have to ensure multi-family housing is being built with the needs of families in mind.
I was one of the Councillors who supported the building of the first purpose-built rental in Austin Heights in decades. This much-needed project is currently under construction. I aim to keep supporting projects so we can achieve a minimum 3% rental vacancy rate here in Coquitlam. Increasing the supply of rental housing and addressing the vacancy rate will help stabilize rental rates and will provide more opportunities for those “harder to house” to find housing. Increasing the vacancy rate will also hopefully encourage landlords currently refusing to maintain their rental units, to improve them – so the quality of the rental homes improves. 3% isn’t a fantastic number with respect to rental vacancy rates, but it’s a start.
I am also very passionate about “Families with Children” housing being offered by Habitat for Humanity: https://www.teritowner.ca/toggle/habitat-for-huma…y-family-housing/