Inclusionary Policies to Facilitate Affordable Housing Development in Ontario
Members of GPA and Focus Consulting were retained to examine the use of inclusionary zoning as a planning tool to promote the creation of affordable housing in Ontario. The basic premise of inclusionary zoning is that developers would be required to provide a percentage of their units as affordable. Drawing on experiences in other jurisdictions in the US, the team documented the various approaches that have been used to achieve inclusionary zoning including zoning requirements, bonus density incentives and a blend of the two approaches. The study included an evaluation of the economic feasibility of inclusionary zoning in different types of markets and concluded that the inclusion of affordable housing in development projects would not place an undue financial hardship on a private development in smaller and mid-sized municipalities in Ontario. The report also examined the nature of legislative changes that would need to be enacted by the Province to allow municipalities to pursue inclusionary zoning.