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Missing Middle Open House - April 5

Missing Middle Open House

Friday, April 5, 2019
 7:00 to 8:30.

Parkallen Community League Hall
6510 111 Street

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To find out more about the Missing Middle and how this will influence future development in Parkallen, please attend the Missing Middle Open House. 

Want to know what exactly the Missing Middle refers to? The following is an excerpt from the Civics Corner, Parkallen News April 2019

What is the Missing Middle?

The City’s current draft report refers to the Missing Middle as “multi-unit housing that falls between single and semi detached housing and tall apartment buildings and includes a range of medium scale developments, including row housing, stacked row housing and walk-up apartments. These housing forms are considered to be “missing” because there has been a decline in their development in recent decades in many cities, and they were never widely developed in Edmonton”, although we have 16 RA7 zoned apartments in Parkallen.  The report goes on to say “Encouraging the development of missing middle housing forms is essential for increasing housing choice and supporting complete communities. Medium scale housing can provide affordable housing options, allow residents to age in place, encourage a diversity of households in all communities, and contribute to more walkable neighbourhoods by creating a more compact urban form.”

Administration wants to develop “A new multi-unit housing use . . .  to allow greater design flexibility, and a clear succession of allowable height and building size . . .  as zones increase in the intensity of use. Administration also proposes incentives for larger units and amendments to separation space requirements.”  The report outlines proposed changes to reduce setbacks and step backs that soften impacts and provide a transition zone between medium density redevelopment and existing low density residential homes. The report also states “The proposed amendments also retire existing overlays (would this include the Mature Neighbourhood Overlay currently regulating infill?) for greater simplicity, while incorporating building articulation and design elements from the overlays into the underlying zones. The proposed amendments are complex and significant in scope to support the successful realization of incorporating more missing middle in Edmonton.”

The draft Missing Middle City Report proposes zoning changes intended to increase density in medium density zones.  Parkallen has recommended the City retain sensitive transitions to mitigate impacts of medium density infill development on existing low density neighbours and the community.  We have also sought to preserve the existing 21 day pre-decision variance notification period  which the report recommends removing.  This would result in only a 21 day appeal period for neighbours.  The report also recommends a certain percentage of larger dwellings in multi-unit housing with 3 bedrooms and a minimum 100 sq m in size be reserved for “diverse households”, a change from “family oriented housing”.  We asked for revisions to ensure a certain percentage of larger units in multi-unit housing are available as affordable housing for adults with children with 3 bedrooms, that they be located on the bottom 3 floors and be directly accessible to amenity space.   The new definition of “diverse households”  would include groups of adults.  Parkallen already allows  RF1 zone lodging for up to 6 adults as a discretionary use that has been approved.

Our Civics Director, Jan Hardstaff, has provided an analysis on the proposed changes which she has marked with some of her questions and concerns. You can view this document here.