City to increase development charges

OTTAWA – Ottawa is looking at a hike to development charges.

 On May 9 the city’s Planning committee today approved a new schedule of development charges to help ensure essential infrastructure and services keep pace with growth in Ottawa.

 “Following the principle of growth paying for growth, development charges ensure that those benefitting from new growth within Ottawa are the ones paying for the associated initial capital costs needed to service it,” city staff released in a statement. “The city uses development charges to recover the costs of such infrastructure and services as roads, water supply systems, public transit, parks, recreation facilities, libraries, affordable housing and paramedic services.”

 The Development Charges Act requires municipalities to enact a new Development Charges By-law every five years. Council will need to enact a new by-law for Ottawa before the current one expires on Tuesday, June 11. The new by-law will reflect an increase in development charge rates based on proposed adjustments to calculations in two background studies approved today.

The background studies identify a total capital investment of $7.53 billion over the next 12 years, with $2.42 billion to be recovered from development charges – $1.64 billion from residential development and $778 million from non-residential development. Development charges under the proposed revised by-law would increase from $25,113 to $30,977 for a new single-family house inside the Greenbelt. Outside the Greenbelt, that charge would increase from $35,047 to $36,388. The development charge costs would still represent about five to seven per cent of the cost of new homes in Ottawa. 

Giant Tiger could soon have a new corporate headquarters at 2480 Walkley Road after the committee approved a zoning amendment to permit construction of a four-storey office building with retail space on the ground floor. The project would be built in phases and the existing Giant Tiger store on site would continue to operate while the new one is being built.

Items approved at the Planning committee meeting will go to council on Wednesday, May 22.