Kelowna looking to collect more money from new homes - InfoNews

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Kelowna looking to collect more money from new homes

A house under construction in Clifton Road area of Kelowna.
Image Credit: FILE PHOTO
February 22, 2019 - 3:30 PM

KELOWNA - The cost of new homes will jump by about $3,000 if Kelowna City Council agrees to increase the fees charged to developers.

Called development cost charges, these are fees that have been collected for years so that new construction helps pay the cost of building roads, sewers and water systems, and buying parkland.

The estimated costs of building these services have been updated from 2016 to 2018 and show significant increases.

The biggest change in costs (21.2 per cent) was in the parkland acquisition segment. This is due, in part, to the fact that the old estimates did not “incorporate a justifiable premium for the high proportion of ‘unique’ properties,” such as waterfront or prime development lands, states a report written by Infrastructure Engineering Manager Joel Shaw that’s going to council on Monday, Feb. 25.

The cost of roads and “active transportation” has gone up by 12.2 per cent over the past two years, primarily due to increases of 25 to 47 per cent for curb and gutter, sidewalks, granular sub-base and asphalt. Cost increases for water and sewer increased between 2.7 and 9.8 per cent.

The fees charged to developers vary, depending on what region of the city the homes are built in. The new fees will see the city collect a low of $18,209 for new homes in South East Kelowna and a high of $41,125 in the South Mission.

The reason for the significant difference between these two areas is because there’s not much new housing proposed for South East Kelowna so existing services don’t need as much upgrading as in the South Mission where far more development is proposed, Shaw said.

If council agrees, the new rates can’t be imposed until they are approved by the provincial government, a process that usually takes about two months, Shaw said.

Developers who already have rezoning applications filed, will have a one-year grace period before the new rates apply.

This is how much the city would get from developers for each house built:

  • South East Kelowna: $18,209
  • South Mission (south of Bellevue Creek): $41,125
  • North East end of Inner City (Hartman Road to Old Vernon Road): $29,278
  • North Highway 33 (Hartman Road to Mission Creek): $24,302
  • North of Inner City (UBCO): $21,981
  • Inner City (Bellevue Creek to UBCO and John Hindle Drive): $20,601

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