‘Missing Middle’ projects finally submitted to City of Victoria

'Missing Middle' projects finally submitted to City of Victoria
Victoria Mayor Marianne Alto is pictured. Oct. 19, 2023.

In January, Victoria passed its Missing Middle Housing Initiative.

But in the months after nothing was submitted.

Despite a desperate need for housing, Mayor Marianne Alto said the city didn’t receive a single application.

“We’re trying to do our part as much as we can, as a local government, to ease the rules and regulations without compromising the design guidelines, of course. But really trying to find that sweet spot that makes it attractive for that builder to take the risks,” Alto said.

Council amended its original Missing Middle Housing Initiative policy in September.

The amendments included changes to height allowances and setbacks.

READ MORE: Missing middle changes aim to make building housing easier in Victoria

Alto is optimistic this will help with a number of proposals coming forward.

“We have five now, in the pipe, which is great – and that’s obviously a huge improvement over the zero we had earlier in the year,” she said.

With his experience as a city planner, Joseph Calenda is working with the developer on the application for 1734 Hollywood Cres. “It’s absolutely exciting. I think ours is the third application.”

This single family home will be transformed as a result of Victoria’s first Missing Middle project under the new guidelines.

“Right now it is a single family home that is coming down. And that will be replaced by two buildings that kind of look like houseplexes, big houses, and one building will have three units. And the other building will have four units,” Calenda said.

Overall, Alto hopes the Missing Middle policy will pick up momentum.

“I think it’s still a little bit missing. But I’m hoping that if you interview me by this time next year it won’t be,” Alto said.

That first Missing Middle Housing Initiative proposal could be ready to go when it’s officially approved in six weeks.

Mary GriffinMary Griffin

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