In 2009 the City reviewed the development charges that should be levied for new developments. This review is carried out once every several years.
Development charges are levied for new development in the following different categories.
- residential - outside the greenbelt
- residential - inside the greenbelt
- residential - rural
- and non-residential = retail/commercial/industrial development.
The final development charge is arrived at by rolling up individual amounts anticipated to be needed for building new roads, transit, recreation, sewers, parks, libraries, police, fire, etc.
The largest charge by far is for roads. The roads figure is arrived at as follows:
- use the Transportation Master Plan list of all the foreseen new road projects for the next 20 yrs
- estimate their cost and total them up
- subtract 5% which is counted as benefit of these new roads to existing development
- subtract another % which is counted as extra capacity available post the 20 yr period.(typically another 20%, the exact amount depends on the specific project and when it will be constructed)
- take the remaining amount and assign 38% to be paid for by non-residential development
- 62% remains to be financed by residential development
That residential component total in the 2009 study came out to be 776m$
- this 776m$ was reduced by 96m$ because that's how much was in the reserve fund for development charges for roads as of 2009 leaving a final total of money to be raised as 680m$
- 680m$ is divided by the forecasted population increase to 2031 (344,000 new people)
- so that 1,944$ needs to be raised for each new inhabitant
- to get the DC for a new single family home, the City assumed 3.35 people live per single detached home
- so the DC charge component for roads per new single family home is 6,661$
- this represents about 1/3 of the total of the DC charge levy for a new home inside the greenbelt
So that is the interesting part. Now for the surprising part.
- approximately 90% of the new forecasted road projects are outside the greenbelt (about the only one inside is the proposed Alta Vista Corridor - AVC, which few people inside the greenbelt even want!)
- yet the 6,661$ cost for building new roads citywide is levied equally against a home inside or outside of the greenbelt!
How many kms per year does a new resident inside the greenbelt drive on a widened Greenbank or Strandherd road in Barrhaven? Yet new development inside the greenbelt must pay an equal share of widening that road as someone who buys a new residence in for example Barrhaven.