Cranbrook, BC (October 26, 2023) – 1400 new housing units are needed to meet the City of Cranbrook’s housing demand over the next decade, with 900 of those units being more affordable options.
Those are key findings from the City’s recently updated Housing Needs Report presented to Council at a Committee of the Whole meeting at City Hall on Wednesday, October 25, 2023.
The City wanted to update its previously endorsed 2020 Housing Needs Report using newly available data from the 2021 census. This update identifies the estimated number of units required to address current unmet needs in Cranbrook’s housing system and keep pace with projected growth through 2031.
“We are in the process of forming a Mayor’s Task Force to deal specifically with housing needs for Cranbrook,” says Mayor Wayne Price. “This Task Force will be comprised of subject matter experts who will develop a housing plan and implementation strategy with a focus on set goals, and bring recommendations back to Council for consideration.”
Creation of the Task Force was approved by Council at their regular meeting on October 16, 2023.
This new Housing Needs Report was undertaken by Administration in anticipation of the Housing Accelerator Fund (HAF) application through the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), which Council endorsed in September 2023.
The HAF is designed to provide incentive funding (contributions) to local governments to encourage local initiatives that remove barriers to housing supply, accelerate the growth of supply and support the development of complete, low-carbon and climate-resilient affordable, inclusive, equitable and diverse communities.
“This updated needs assessment will help the City in making decisions regarding the future housing needs for the community,” says Rob Veg, Manager of Planning for the City of Cranbrook.
An Action Plan has also been previously presented to Council to help grow the housing supply and speed up housing approvals. It looks to facilitate housing growth, promote “gentle density” and infill, further incentivize the creation and legalization of secondary suites, create opportunities for accessory dwelling units, improve infrastructure and increase the potential for speedier development approvals for affordable housing.