Infill housing

Infill housing – the addition of new housing units to existing neighbourhoods – is an important part of the City's overall strategy to combat the impacts of urban sprawl. Focusing growth in areas with existing infrastructure such as roads, schools, parks and transit makes it possible to build resilient neighbourhoods with access to daily services and a wider variety of housing options.

Read this overview on the development process

Efficiently using our infrastructure by adding new housing to our central neighbourhoods is vital to the long-term health of our community, but only if we do it right. We’re working to ensure that infill housing is high-quality and designed to compliment surrounding neighbourhoods.

Infill Design Challenge 2.0

Building on the success of the 2016 Infill Challenge, the City of Kelowna presented its second open design competition for infill development. The Infill Design Challenge (IDC) 2.0 set out to generate innovative new ideas for infill housing that works  to enhance affordability, diversity, resiliency, inclusivity, and livability in Kelowna’s housing system. Visit the competition page for more info.

The 2016 Infill Challenge and the RU7 zone

The Infill Challenge was developed as an innovative competition to identify new designs for infill housing in parts of Kelowna’s urban core. Winning projects were intended to act as catalysts, inspiring greater achievement in infill housing design and strengthening community and developer support along the way. Entries were vetted against criteria established by a broad cross-section of the community.

The result of the 2016 Infill Challenge was the creation of a unique 4 dwelling housing zone called RU7 (under Zoning Bylaw No. 8000). Under our new Zoning Bylaw No. 12375, the RU7 zone has been replaced with the MF1 - Infill Housing Zone.

Rezoning to MF1

If your property has a future land use of C-NHD - Core Area Neighbourhood or S-MU - Suburban-Multi, it may be possible for you to rezone to MF1 - Infill Housing. See our Development Overview Process page for how to rezone your property. If you aren't sure what your future land use is, check out our map viewer.

Infill development process

All properties that were previously zoned RU7 (Zoning Bylaw No. 8000) will be automatically rezoned to MF1 under Zoning Bylaw No. 12375 to permit the same or greater number of units. 

If your property is already zoned under MF1 and you wish to develop a project, you need to have a apply for two permits:

  1. Development permit– evaluates the form and character of a development proposal, including landscaping. The development permit review process is rigorous and aims to ensure that every proposed development contributes positively to the surrounding neighbourhood and aligns with Chapter 18: Design Guidelines in the 2040 OCP.
  2. Building permit – ensures compliance with the BC Building Code.

Communicating with your neighbours about your development proposal is strongly encouraged. Reactions to new development can range from curiosity to concern, and we suggest keeping in contact with your neighbours throughout the planning and development process. Having neighbourhood support helps infill development contribute to stronger, more diverse neighbourhoods.

Development costs and other considerations

Before moving forward with a MF1 development proposal, you should be aware of several important considerations:

  • Design standards: urban development proposals are reviewed carefully to ensure they meet the OCP Chapter 18 Design Guidelines.
  • Development cost charges (DCCs): DCCs must be paid for each new residential unit developed on your parcel. DCCs are paid at the building permit stage and can cost between $20,000 to $50,000 per unit.
  • Frontage improvements & services: you may be required to pay a deposit to cover the cost of upgrading the road in front of your property including improvements to the curb, sidewalk, boulevard and street lighting. You may also be required to upgrade services such as water and sewer lines. These fees are paid at the building permit stage. An estimate on these fees may be available if you contact our Planning Department at planninginfo@kelowna.ca.
  • Tenure: it’s important to determine how you want to develop your  lot, including if you want to stratify and sell the units or rent them out.  The form of tenure you choose can have an impact on the costs listed above. It is much simpler to stratify the units at the time of construction than after you have occupancy.
  • Building permit fees: these fees are calculated based on the estimated value of construction. A home protection warranty is required.