Housing is a commodity that is in limited supply, and when there is a limited supply, the price rises to curb the demand. This is an essential function of the free market.
Housing unaffordability is the result of artificial scarcity, created locally mostly by land use regulations and legislation, such as the ALR, environmental constraints and local governments. When there is demand to live in an area, as we have seen for the past few years here, the market should naturally respond by increasing the supply of housing.
Restricting the supply of homes drives prices out of reach of most homebuyers. Approving the Spiller Road development will help prevent prices from continuing to skyrocket by creating more housing. This development will increase the supply of housing, making housing more affordable for all of Penticton as move up buyers will be selling their homes to purchase newer homes, opening the market for first time buyers and buyers in all price ranges.
Without approving this development, tax revenues the City would receive from developments, go to other government bodies. Developments outside our boundaries, and the people who live there (because our regulations would not allow them to live in Penticton), tax our services, amenities and infrastructure; ultimately becoming burdensome to the taxpayers within Penticton. Developments such as Skaha Hills, Heritage Hills and subdivisions in Naramata do not provide tax revenue to the city of Penticton.
The City of Penticton will realize significantly more tax revenue by building the Vinterra development at 1050 Spiller Road; construction jobs will grow. It is estimated that for every 100 new homes built, 253 local jobs are supported, supporting local wages and salaries of $7,388,000. Local business owners will see an increase in income of $2,670,000 and local tax revenues will increase by $854,000.
Currently Canada is undergoing a megatrend by way of a generational housing shift. Baby boomers are retiring in record numbers and leaving the inner suburbs for the outer suburbs, for smaller towns or for townhouses. It is part of a broad-based generational movement of people.
Unless we support new developments within Penticton, we are forcing development to occur outside of our municipal boundaries. Not approving this development would be contrary to the Official Community Plan that the City has worked on tirelessly for nearly a decade!
Penticton desperately needs the proposed Vinterra development at 1050 Spiller Road.
I am a realtor, and a rancher, that lives next door to the proposed development.