Vancouver Gets 'Granny Flats' Right

Not forcing "style-matching" are among the recommendations for a good accessory dwelling unit (ADU) policy

1 minute read

November 26, 2017, 1:00 PM PST

By snewberg @JoeUrbanist


In an effort to densify and address affordable housing, cities make several key mistakes when it comes to "granny flats," according to CityLab. Vancouver-based writer and architect Bryn Davidson cites that city's accessory dwelling unit (ADU) policy as a successful model in a number of ways, including design, parking and approvals.   

Five important recommendations include: implement ADU policy citywide rather than a neighborhood pilot project, don't burden the policy with caveats based on the existing unit on-site, don't solicit feedback from neighbors, don't let parking requirements overwhelm the policy, and don't force "style-matching."

Davidson concludes by writing:

"As for what’s next: we need to start talking about how our pleasant, tree-lined, single-family neighborhoods can evolve into pleasant, tree-lined multifamily neighborhoods."

Vancouver's ADU policy is arguably a big success, with more than 2,000 units built across the city since 2010.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017 in CityLab

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