Kelowna city council has unanimously approved a rezoning application which could add as many as 171 rental units to the city's rental inventory.
The six-storey apartment would be situated on what are presently six single family lots bordering on Harvey Avenue and Saucier Avenue to the south.
Council approved rezoning the lots to MF3R—a new apartment housing rental-only zone—which means the building would remain rental-only in perpetuity.
"The applicant wishes to construct 171 long-term rental units. Parking will meet the zoning bylaw requirements through a two-storey parking podium," planning manager Terry Barton told council.
Barton says vehicle access would be off Saucier Avenue.
In an effort to be more sensitive to the neighbourhood, Barton says the developer plans townhomes along the Saucier side of the building.
In response to concerns raised by Coun. Charlie Hodge that council seems to have been approving many more rental-only buildings of late as opposed to for-purchase projects, Coun. Loyal Wooldridge reminded his colleagues the city remain in a rental crisis.
"We know we are in a rental deficit, our vacancy rate is 0.6 per cent across the city," said Wooldridge.
"From my perspective we have to keep our foot on the pedal in terms of building more rental tenure only units. For me, the zoning makes sense."
Coun. Mohini Singh agreed, saying while council seems to be approving many rental units, we are still not keeping up with the demand.
"We need to keep up our rental inventory," she said.