As many of you know, Toronto currently allows “laneway suites” across the entire city on an as-of-right basis. What this means is that no variances or special planning permissions are generally required to build. Assuming you meet the by-law, you can go straight to a building permit.
This is how Mackay Laneway House was built and, though it required an extra layer of approvals from the forestry department because of a large on-site tree, getting a building permit was relatively straight forward. I think it took between 6-8 weeks from initial submission.
As part of the City’s efforts to increase overall housing supply, another form of accessory dwelling unit is currently being studied: garden suites. Public consultations are now underway and, from what I have heard, the hope is to make these similarly as-of-right before the end of the year. Hopefully it’ll be earlier.
I think this will be a positive thing for Toronto and so I would encourage all of you to complete the online garden suite survey that the City has open until June 1, 2021. Public consultation is an important part of the planning process and too often it is the voices of a few representing the views of many.
So if you’ve got 5 minutes, now is your chance to speak up.