For immediate release
ESQUIMALT, BC—The Township of Esquimalt is taking another step forward towards allowing detached suites in the municipality. Detached accessory dwelling units (DADUs) or suites (otherwise known as garden suites, granny flats, laneway houses etc.) are currently not permitted. However, there is growing interest among the public in including these buildings as a method of offsetting mortgage costs, providing a more affordable detached living option and for housing a family member.
At a March 9 committee of the Whole, Council reviewed a staff proposal for legalizing DADUs and asked staff to seek feedback from residents about the proposed regulations and possible design guidelines. The proposed regulations include requirements for the location, size and height of DADUs, as well as aspects of building design such as roof form, windows, lighting and landscaping. An online survey was launched on May 12 as part of this engagement.
“The region is in need of more housing and it’s important that we properly consider having detached suites as part of Esquimalt’s housing mix,” said Mayor Barbara Desjardins. “This survey is the next step in our assessment process and I’d like to invite residents to share their ideas in more detail”.
Within the CRD, DADUs are currently permitted in the municipalities of Victoria, Colwood, Metchosin, North Saanich, Sidney and Sooke. Further away, Nanaimo has had ‘carriage house’ regulations since 2008, and a large number of lower mainland municipalities allow ‘laneway homes’ and ‘coach houses’. Vancouver alone has issued over 3,000 permits for laneway homes since 2009 and is targeting an additional 4,000 by 2028 as part of their housing strategy.
Once the public engagement is complete, Council will need to review and approve of any formal bylaw amendments before the Township can consider any applications.
To take the survey or learn more, go to esquimalt.ca/detached-suites.
Manager of Communications