The following local policies can increase housing and transportation affordability.
- Establish targets for increasing affordable housing supply in residential neighbourhoods in response to growing housing demands
- Adjust zoning codes to allow single-detached houses in residential neighbourhoods to be converted into townhouses and small apartment buildings.
- Remove barriers to affordable infill housing development, such as unjustified minimum parcel and unit sizes, restrictions on multi-family housing and secondary suites, setback requirements, development impact study requirements, and unjustified fees for infill development.
- Significantly reduce or eliminate minimum parking requirements for lower-priced housing in accessible, multi-modal neighbourhoods.
- Establish multi-modal street design guidelines and “complete streets” policies, so all streets are designed to accommodate diverse uses and users.
- Improve sidewalks, crosswalks, paths and bike lanes, and reduce traffic speeds where needed to ensure walking and cycling safety.
- Improve public transit services, particularly in urban areas where many households are car-free.
- Support affordable taxi and ride hailing services (such as Uber and Lyft), carsharing, vehicle rental services and bikesharing in urban areas.
It is important to integrate these strategies in order to create truly affordable communities. Cheap housing is not truly affordable if located in an isolated, automobile-dependent area where transportation costs are high, and public transit is only useful if neighbourhoods also have good sidewalks.