Shared Housing / Supportive Housing

The municipality is currently reviewing land use regulations in regards to Supportive Housing. Supportive Housing is a broad term that describes housing shared by a group of individuals where support services are provided. Examples include: residential care facilities; group homes; transitionary housing; and halfway houses. The municipality is working to amend our community plans and By-laws to simplify, consolidate and remove barriers to the development of such uses.

On August 1, 2017 Regional Council initiated a process to consider amendments to the Halifax Regional Municipal Planning Strategy and all applicable community municipal planning strategies/land-use By-laws to simplify, consolidate and remove barriers to the development of special care facilities. In November 2017, staff held two public/stakeholder workshops and posted an online survey to receive feedback regarding this project.

To align with the direction of the Centre Plan and Land Use By-law Simplification Projects, this project was expanded to encompass a variety of shared housing uses including all forms of Supportive Housing and other examples of shared accommodation, such as rooming houses and co-housing developments. Through stakeholder and public consultation, the focus of this project has been narrowed to include only Supportive Housing uses. Rooming houses, co-housing and other forms of shared accommodation will continue to be assessed by staff and if necessary will be addressed through a separate planning process.

Over the past several months Planning & Development staff have been developing a new approach for Supportive Housing featuring these key principles:

  • Supportive Housing is considered a type of residential use in which support services including medical care, supervisory or personal care and/or counselling are provided.
  • Supportive Housing uses will be permitted in all residential zones, although scale will vary to fit with existing neighbourhoods.
  • Supportive Housing uses are considered under a single definition—not broken up into various types of uses or categories (residential care facilities, group homes, etc.).
  • Supportive Housing uses will continue to be permitted in Institutional Zones.
  • Supportive Housing uses will adhere to similar built form and land use requirements that are required for residential uses of a similar scale, although some variations will be considered such as allowing for more than one kitchen in a Supportive Housing use.
  • Exceptions and/or additional land use requirements in Rural Communities will be considered to accommodate larger lot sizes, issues with ground water and on-site services, and appropriate development inside rural growth centres.

Staff are in the process of refining our proposed approach and are preparing a report to Regional Council. Updates will continue to be posted here on Shape Your City.

Questions? Want more information?
Please contact Jill MacLellan, Planner III, Planning and Development
Telephone: 902-490-4871
Email: maclelj@halifax.ca

The municipality is currently reviewing land use regulations in regards to Supportive Housing. Supportive Housing is a broad term that describes housing shared by a group of individuals where support services are provided. Examples include: residential care facilities; group homes; transitionary housing; and halfway houses. The municipality is working to amend our community plans and By-laws to simplify, consolidate and remove barriers to the development of such uses.

On August 1, 2017 Regional Council initiated a process to consider amendments to the Halifax Regional Municipal Planning Strategy and all applicable community municipal planning strategies/land-use By-laws to simplify, consolidate and remove barriers to the development of special care facilities. In November 2017, staff held two public/stakeholder workshops and posted an online survey to receive feedback regarding this project.

To align with the direction of the Centre Plan and Land Use By-law Simplification Projects, this project was expanded to encompass a variety of shared housing uses including all forms of Supportive Housing and other examples of shared accommodation, such as rooming houses and co-housing developments. Through stakeholder and public consultation, the focus of this project has been narrowed to include only Supportive Housing uses. Rooming houses, co-housing and other forms of shared accommodation will continue to be assessed by staff and if necessary will be addressed through a separate planning process.

Over the past several months Planning & Development staff have been developing a new approach for Supportive Housing featuring these key principles:

  • Supportive Housing is considered a type of residential use in which support services including medical care, supervisory or personal care and/or counselling are provided.
  • Supportive Housing uses will be permitted in all residential zones, although scale will vary to fit with existing neighbourhoods.
  • Supportive Housing uses are considered under a single definition—not broken up into various types of uses or categories (residential care facilities, group homes, etc.).
  • Supportive Housing uses will continue to be permitted in Institutional Zones.
  • Supportive Housing uses will adhere to similar built form and land use requirements that are required for residential uses of a similar scale, although some variations will be considered such as allowing for more than one kitchen in a Supportive Housing use.
  • Exceptions and/or additional land use requirements in Rural Communities will be considered to accommodate larger lot sizes, issues with ground water and on-site services, and appropriate development inside rural growth centres.

Staff are in the process of refining our proposed approach and are preparing a report to Regional Council. Updates will continue to be posted here on Shape Your City.

Questions? Want more information?
Please contact Jill MacLellan, Planner III, Planning and Development
Telephone: 902-490-4871
Email: maclelj@halifax.ca