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Regional District considering unified Similkameen Valley zoning bylaw

The RDOS is updating its bylaws to meet changes in provincial legislation and regulations
The Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen is looking to update its zoning bylaws to meet new provincial regulations. It is also proposing a unified Similkameen Valley zoning bylaw. (Black Press file)

As local governments move to get in line with the provincial government’s orders on housing, one of the casualties looks to be separate zoning bylaws for rural Keremeos, Hedley and rural Princeton.

The board of the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen board will be discussing proposed updates to its zoning bylaws at their Feb. 8 meeting, including scrapping separate zoning bylaws for Electoral Areas G and H.

The updates to the zoning bylaws include changing setback regulations for their low-density residential zone, increasing the maximum height of a single detached dwelling by one metre to 11 for low-density and small holding zoning, scrapping the maximum floor area limit for secondary suites and the minimum building width requirement for principal dwellings.

The restriction prohibiting a secondary suite if an accessory dwelling on parcels larger than one hectare is also being asked to be removed.

Some of the options, such as the height increase for low-density and small holding zones, are noted by regional district staff to remain within the board’s power to leave unchanged.

The updates also that a portion of Okanagan Falls designated the primary growth area, where the regional district provides water and sewer service, will have to change under the provincial government’s updated legislation to allow for higher density of three units on parcels less than 280 square metres in and four units on larger parcels.

The regional is also proposing to scrap the existing zoning bylaws for the Rural Princeton and the Rural Keremeos and Hedley electoral areas, noting that the current bylaws have many out-of-date sections and are missing amendments that have applied to other areas.

The new zoning bylaw would be up-to-date and include the changes to meet current provincial guidelines.

Brennan Phillips

About the Author: Brennan Phillips

Brennan was raised in the Okanagan and is thankful every day that he gets to live and work in one of the most beautiful places in Canada.
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