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Toronto is on the verge of finding the missing middle

Toronto’s chief planner Gregg Lintern (who you can follow over here on Twitter) was recently in the Toronto Star talking about the city’s plans to allow more multi-unit dwellings in our low-rise single-family neighborhoods.

I was careful to say “more” because they are already permissible in some areas. The challenge is that they’re not happening at any sort of meaningful scale, which is an obvious signal that some key ingredients are still missing.

Or perhaps there are too many required ingredients. For example, right now the zoning by-law requires one car parking space for every dwelling in a multi-unit building. This is, of course, dumb and the requirement should be completely eliminated.

Changes like this, as well as many others, are long overdue. Not just in Toronto, but in many other cities. And it is partially what I was getting at when I wrote about laneway housing this past weekend and hinted at the need for other solutions to increase housing supply.

So when you have a few minutes, I would encourage you to complete the city’s survey on expanding permissions for multiplexes across the city. I just did it and voted to bring on the multiplexes.

Photo by Tiago Rodrigues on Unsplash


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