Langley Township council admonished for development U-turns

Last-minute changes to developments are "difficult and costly," say two groups representing developers and builders.

Anne McMullin is president of the Urban Development Institute.

Construction industry representatives want the Township of Langley to stop making last-minute changes to development projects.

Saying it is “difficult and costly to accommodate last minute requests” Urban Development Institute president Anne McMullin and Greater Vancouver Home Builders’ Association president Bob de Wit have written Township council to complain.

The joint letter by the two organizations was sent after council voted to change a townhouse project to increase the amount of adaptable units that can be converted to accommodate people with disabilities, raising it from five to 10 per cent.

McMullin and de Wit said that was double the amount currently required under existing Township regulations.

“Ad hoc decisions that are contrary to established policies affect the consistency and predictability of the approvals process,” the letter states.

It concludes by asking council to “continue with its current and approved requirements in order to provide certainty [to the industry].”

The two groups have 14,000 members who represent “thousands of individuals involved in all aspects of development and planning,” in the words of the Dec. 19 letter to the mayor and council.

The letter was sent the same week council spilt over a proposal to build high-density housing near the local Mormon temple after some members of council suggested the plan could be reconfigured to shift single-family homes nearer the temple.

There was a  tie vote  that resulted in the defeat of the proposal, which later passed on a re-vote on Jan. 13.

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