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An examination of the land inventories of major private sector residential developers in Metropolitan Vancouver Winspear, John Bryan

Abstract

The focus of this study is on the role of the major residential developers in the Vancouver region in terms of the raw land inventories presently held and the difficulties encountered in adding to these land inventories to replenish land supply. The objective is to determine whether the major private sector developers can provide substantial relief from the present dwelling unit supply/demand imbalance. Information on the land holdings of twelve major developers was collected through the use of a questionnaire. Information as to the relative sizes of urban areas, sewer areas, sewer catchment areas, development areas, and the parcels within the development areas, was collated from planning reports, maps, and tabulation. Analysis of the data reveals that private sector developers do not have extensive land inventories in the Vancouver region. Further analysis points out that the inventories are in most cases, held for immediate development. Evidence shows that splintered land ownership patterns and small parcel sizes are instrumental in reducing raw land inventory sizes. Furthermore, evidence shows the combination of small parcel sizes, assembly difficulties and the direction of development toward specific development areas by municipalities sharply reduces the potential numbers of residential dwelling units.

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