Toronto changes rules to allow multiplex developments

Officials pledged to achieve or exceed 285,000 new homes in the province by 2031.

Key Takeaways:

  • Officials are changing city rules to allow multiplex developments in any neighbourhood.
  • The city noted that supply of low-rise housing, such as multiplexes, has not kept up with the demand
  • The city will alter its Official Plan and zoning bylaw to allow the new developments.

The Whole Story:

Toronto is changing its policies to allow for multiplex developments city-wide. 

The city’ council’s adopted recommendations will result in amendments to the city’s Official Plan and city-wide zoning bylaw to enable the development of multiplexes – low-rise housing with two, three or four units in a single building – in all neighbourhoods throughout Toronto. 

The recommended changes aim to permit more housing in all low-rise neighbourhoods while largely maintaining their built form and landscape amenities.

“Multiplexes have a long history in some Toronto neighbourhoods, providing desirable housing for many different types of households,” said Gregg Lintern, chief planner and executive director, city planning. “Our recommendations to permit multiplex housing across all neighbourhoods will enable property owners to create housing for extended families or rental units for tenants. This is an important step to removing exclusionary zoning and will contribute to the city’s housing goals.”

This initiative is one component of the city’s 2023 Housing Action Plan, which seeks to increase the housing supply within complete, inclusive and sustainable communities with critical infrastructure to support growth.

Officials noted that while there has been housing growth through mid- and high-rise apartment buildings concentrated in densely populated areas of the city, the supply of low-rise housing, such as multiplexes, has not kept up with the demand.

To remove barriers and enable the creation of more low-rise housing, the adopted report recommends an Official Plan Amendment to permit multiplexes in residential areas across the city and a Zoning Bylaw Amendment to implement these permissions in all residential zones. The report also recommends a monitoring program to track uptake and identify issues related to achieving multiplex housing.

The amendments were informed by feedback received through public consultation, including comments submitted to the city in response to the draft amendments.

The full Expanding Housing Options in Neighbourhoods: Multiplex Study – Final Report is available on the city’s website. 


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