Garden Suites

Neighbourhood Planning

Maple Ridge's Official Community Plan identifies garden suites as a possible option for modest density infill in urban, suburban and rural residential neighbourhoods. In the 2006 Planning Department Business Plan, Council authorized the Planning Department to undertake this study. Based on this direction, a discussion paper has been prepared that highlights the regulatory and technical issues that should be considered if pursuing Bylaws to allow Detached Garden Suites in Maple Ridge This report highlights the findings in the "Detached Garden Suites Discussion Paper."

Detached Suites

It is important to note that a detached garden suite use is not intended to be a second principal house on the one family lot but is rather meant to be detached, accessory and subordinate in nature to the main house. Detached garden suites will offer a smaller, accessible and ground-oriented housing form and encourage "aging in place" for residents who own fairly large lots and yet do not require them at this stage of their life-cycle. They would, however, have a choice of residing in their own garden suite or the main house.

Eligible Zones

The zones that would be eligible, subject to compliance with the bylaw, include:
  • One-family residential zones such as: RS-1b (One-Family Urban Residential - Medium Density), RS-1 (One-Family Urban Residential), RS-1a (One-Family Amenity Residential), RS-1c (One-Family Urban Residential - Low Density), RS-1d (One-Family Urban Residential - Half Acre), SRS (Special Urban Residential), RS-2 (One-Family Suburban Residential) and RS-3 (One-Family Rural Residential)
  • Agricultural Zones such as: A-1 (Small Holding Agricultural), A-2 (Upland Agricultural), A-3 (Extensive Agricultural) and A-4 (Intensive Greenhouse District)

Council Approval

On November 4, 2008, Council approved the proposed policy and all the bylaw amendments, which were discussed and reviewed through four workshops and two public open house sessions. Issues raised were addressed and numerous benefits of this form of housing as mentioned in the discussion paper and the interest shown by residents in proposed regulations around this permitted use has resulted in adoption of regulations to permit this form of housing in our community.