Timeline: Residential Infill Strategy

The Residential Infill Strategy is a process the City of Winnipeg is undertaking right now that will come up with a policy framework for residential infill development in Winnipeg, including design guidelines.

Dec. 5, 2016: Winnipeg City Council’s Property & Development Committee directs the Winnipeg Public Service to prepare a work plan for Residential Infill Strategy. This would include stakeholder consultation & deliverables and could be prepared in conjunction with the Our Winnipeg review (Our Winnipeg is the City’s Master Plan). Objectives of this Strategy were:

1) Creating a policy framework to encourage infill

2) Planning & design guidelines for residential infill.

3) Creating an infill communications strategy to share widely with builders & residents.

April 11, 2017: The Property & Development Committee directs the Public Service to proceed with the work identified in the Residential Infill Strategy Workplan. The workplan makes the following clear:

1) That the scope of the Strategy is residential development in “Areas of Stability”.

2) “The proposed Infill Strategy will address, at a minimum, built form, design features, lot width and size, yards, landscape standards, density, and zoning. Commercial development and Transformative Areas (corridors, centres, TOD [Transit-Oriented Development], redevelopment areas and downtown) are outside the scope of this project.”

3) Sets stakeholder consultations for May to Sept 2017.

June 2017 to September 2018: The Public Service conducts its public engagement process.

August 2018: Significant organizing and advocacy takes place pushing for more restrictive guidelines.

Before January 7, 2019: Public Service of Winnipeg prepares a report on a Residential Infill Strategy. This report includes recommendations to revise maximum lot coverage (which includes phantom garages) and implement more restrictive design and compatibility standards for infill.

January 7, 2019: The Property & Development Committee meets to discuss the Residential Infill Strategy, among other topics. The Committee directs the Public Service to come back in 30 days with an implementation framework.

February 4, 2019: The Public Service of Winnipeg comes back to the City’s Planning & Property Committee meeting with plans for more consultations around the implementation of the plan. This new round of consultations is initially set for spring.

Spring 2019: Public Service doesn’t hold new consultations because they’re denied $650K in new funds to make it happen by Council.

September to November 2019: Consultation on design guidelines and intensification criteria. 1,988 surveys are submitted to the City and 300 people attend the Infill Open Houses held in September and October. City also hosts stakeholder groups in October and November. Consultations narrower in scope because of funding limits.

September 18, 2020: The City of Winnipeg releases draft Infill Guidelines. These contain some concerning elements.

September 18 to October 15, 2020: Consultation phase for the draft Infill guidelines. These include an online survey, in-person sessions, and online sessions. Over 778 response were received to the survey, with about 37% of the responses coming from the North St. Vital postal code area of R2M.

Week of April 12th, 2021: Last minute changes are added to the Infill Guidelines. These make the already restrictive draft Guidelines much more restrictive. The Technical Advisory Committee of experts the City tasked with giving informed advice on the Guidelines does not have a chance to officially offer input on these changes.

April 16, 2021: The Technical Advisory Committee submits a letter to the Mayor and Council outlining their concerns over the last minute changes to the Infill Guidelines.

April 19, 2021:  The Property & Development Committee meets to discuss the Infill Guidelines. They defer voting on the Guidelines for about a month but listen to many public delegations expressed dismay over the Guidelines. Councillor Janice Lukes, a member of the Committee, said she definitely intended to have a final vote on the matter when the Property & Development Committee next meets.

June 8, 2021: The Property & Development Committee is set to have a final vote on the Infill Guidelines.

Find out more on the City Website: winnipeg.ca/InfillStrategy