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June 16, 2022
🌧️ High 13º | Low 9º

Good morning, Oak Bay.

Oak Bay council made some moves this past week to diversify housing in the municipality. That's good news. Over the past few months I've reported on a lot of seniors, students, and families who have been affected by the housing crisis in the area, and it's difficult to talk to people without a home. Yesterday, Oak Bay council had a Committee of the Whole meeting about its Infill Housing Strategy. This strategy is another huge move for affordable housing in the district. Stay tuned for a report on that, or follow me on Twitter to get updates as they happen.

—Ryan, Reporter

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Image credit: The District of Oak Bay/ Facebook
After four years, secondary suites in Oak Bay are moving forward
On Monday, Oak Bay council settled on a policy that could see secondary suites legalized by the end of this year.

"It's a win-win," councillor Cairine Green told Oak Bay Local. "Now, there will be more opportunities to mix generations and to provide home space for people that really need it," she said.

Oak Bay is one of the last municipalities in the region still holding out on legalizing secondary suites. While council acknowledges that illegal secondary suites have been operating under the table, the issue in Oak Bay is how to regulate them.

So far, council has decided suites can be incorporated into single family residential zones; there can be no minimum or maximum lot size; owner occupancy is a requirement; enforcement is complaint-based; and basic health and safety standards must be met by the principal owner in order to operate the suite.

At Monday's meeting, staff asked council for direction on three remaining issues: parking requirements, caregiver status, and how the municipality will track secondary suites.

A boarder—a person living in the principal residence unrelated to the owner or lease holder—has expanded to include caregivers; and, the maximum number of boarders in a principal residence increased to six.

Council voted that secondary suites will not be required to have an additional parking space, but must require bicycle parking, and that suites will need a building permit to operate. Enforcement of secondary suite policies will be complaint-based.

This is welcome news to many students who spoke on Monday night, including UVic Student Society representative, Izzy Adachi, who spoke to the fact that secondary suites exist regardless of the current bylaws.

"Failure to implement a bylaw will not stop illegal suites," she said. "And for students, some of whom are just out of high school or from out of town or different countries, they might not know better and—and we're leaving them vulnerable to bad landlords."

Staff will be begin writing the bylaw with a public hearing intended for September.


What's 'round town?
🌰 Ranger + Baby Boy & the Earthly Delights at the Mint | Enjoy an evening of soft-rock, acoustic, and reggae music | Friday | 8pm | 1412 Douglas St. | $20

🌰 Around in Circles Fundraiser | Watch firefighters, students, and faculty run laps for 24-hours straight | Music starts at 6pm | June 25-26 | 12pm to 12pm | Jack Wallace Memorial Track | Free

🌰The Nosh in Oak Bay Village | Enjoy food from Village Butcher, Oak Bay Seafood and more, along with live music | Saturday | 11am | 2020 Oak Bay Ave. | All ages | Free

 
 
Nicholas Kristof
How to change the world
Capital Daily is pleased to welcome The New York Times columnist, Pulitzer Prize and humanitarian award winner, Nicholas Kristof. Learn from his decades of experience covering war, genocide, and poverty translated into 5 ways to change the world.

This Capital Daily Live lecture is on Monday, June 27 at 1pm, LIVE at UVic’s Farquhar Auditorium, followed by an audience Q&A, and book signing.

Grab your tickets here and get ready for an unforgettable experience with Nicholas Kristof. Student rates available.

Image credit: Orissa Hendersen
Locals gather at McNeill Bay to see Oak Bay houses barged away
A steel ramp was carefully placed down Wednesday evening, as workers got ready to move an Oak Bay home to a waiting barge in McNeill Bay. A small crowd gathered to watch.

"It was very impressive seeing the smooth operation by Nickel Bros.," Orissa Hendersen told Oak Bay Local. "I heard the first house was picked up in Nanaimo, this one came down Estevan Avenue, and a third was yet to be picked up in McNeil Bay."

This is becoming a common sight in Oak Bay—one of Vancouver Island’s priciest real estate market. Nickel Bros. said it moves more than 100 homes off of Vancouver Island each year, many of which are barged to either the Gulf and San Juan Islands, Sunshine Coast, or other parts of Vancouver Island to make way for redevelopment.

Hendersen said it's a welcome sight, and a better move than the alternative. "I am very happy to see these houses being moved rather than being torn down," she said. "Especially if they are moved to islands where it would be very difficult to get all the building materials transported to."

When a building comes down and its materials are hauled off to the dump, the energy used to produce and transport the house is lost. By moving a building you're preserving saving energy, and preserving its history.

Latest News
🌰 Oak Bay High rugby girls defeats Claremont to finish first in provincials. Oak Bay High’s fairly inexperienced rugby 7s have taken the provincial high school girls championship. The team won 10-7 over a strong Claremont Secondary, a team they've faced three times through the season.

🌰 Province invests $35M in Indigenous languages, arts revitalization. The $35 million over three years to the First Peoples’ Cultural Council and Foundation will support revitalization programming and operations, and is on top of the $50-million grant provided in 2018 to address the need to restore languages lost to time and colonialism, said minister Murray Rankin.

🌰 Canada women’s 15s rugby team defeats US in first game of the Pacific Four Series. Canada won 36-5 and Oak Bay High alumni Sophie de Goede captained the team. She won the player of the match award in the process, kicking three conversions.
 
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