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Seniors Housing

The City Administration recognizes the Government of Alberta's policy direction to encourage market innovation and greater market choice in seniors housing options as well as the City's own initiatives to create accessible housing for seniors.

Development permits for seniors housing are issued under general use classes including apartment housing, boarding and lodging houses and extended medical treatment centres. The difficulty with this approach is that these use classes are not specific to seniors housing, so Administration cannot guarantee that seniors housing will actually be the end product.

In addition, the impact of seniors housing is different from general residential developments, as there is less need for parking and an increased demand for smaller dwelling units. As a result, seniors housing is often accommodated by varying standard land use regulations.  Obtaining a variance can be quite costly and time consuming, adding barriers to the construction of seniors housing.

Draft Regulations

The Supportive Community Provisions are a set of criteria that determine whether a development permit application for apartment housing or a boarding and lodging house is intended for seniors housing or similar forms of collective, supportive communities.

If the criteria are met the development would qualify for reduced parking requirements and an increase in density.

The Supportive Community Provisions ensure that a proposed development includes the following criteria:

  • Indoor common amenity area comprises 10% of the Floor Area of the development and contains one or more common dining areas.
  • The landscape plan is designed to enhance the wellness of residents.
  • Internal common spaces are designed to facilitate safety, circulation, and resident interaction.
  • Dwellings and sleeping units are designed according to inclusive design principles. Inclusive Design regulations will be added to the Zoning Bylaw in conjunction with the Supportive Community Provisions.
  • A Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design review has been conducted and incorporated into the development.
  • The development is eligible to be provincially licensed as a supportive living accommodation, which ensures that residents live in the facility on a permanent basis, and that the building operator looks after resident safety and security, as well as provides meals and housekeeping services.
  • The development addresses requirements for pedestrian amenities on-Site and in the surrounding area, including sidewalks and pedestrian crossings.
  • Parking stalls must be slightly wider than standard stalls (2.9 metres wide rather than 2.6 metres) and be painted with double line markings in order to increase ease of use.

Project Stage

This project is in the council decision stage of the text amendment process. City Council approved the proposed amendments (Bylaw 15998) on August 27, 2012.

If you have any questions on the approved amendments, please submit them to chelsey.jersak@edmonton.ca.

For more information:

Chelsey Jersak

Title Planner, Zoning Bylaw Implementation


Fax 780-496-6054
Email chelsey.jersak@edmonton.ca
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