Vancouver, BC: ‘Hiving’ As A Resilient Affordable Housing Strategy

Closeup of two bees on a hexagonal network of beehive cells containing pupae
Inside the hive photo by Rachael Bonoan is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0
Who knew humans could live in wax houses . . . what? Not the right concept for 'hiving?' Better read the article myself! (photo editor)

Vancouver, BC is the least affordable city in North America, with a high proportion of households with low incomes compared to Canada as a whole. As well, it’s a major target for off-shore speculative real estate investment.

The city is fertile ground for ideas about how to solve its housing crisis. Patrick M. Condon, who lives in Vancouver, has just published a cornucopia of new ideas are presented in a new book, 5 Rules for Tomorrow’s Cities. Its principal author, Patrick M. Condon, lives in Vancouver.

CITYLAB  published an excerpt of 5 Rules for Tomorrow’s Cities to explore the notion of urban resilience, and how it can contribute to sustained housing affordability.

The author introduces the notion of architectural design for resilience through ‘hiving.’ In Condon’s words, “Hiving is the splitting up of existing nominally single-family homes into multiple tenures. But before detailing this strategy we need to wrap our brains around how three epochal waves — migration, financial stress, and demographic shift — make hiving necessary, logical, resilient, and sustainable.”

The book provides clear explanations of how two major forces influence the decline of housing affordability — shrinking family size and worldwide asset inflation — before moving on to detail the potential benefits of ‘hiving.’

Read more in CITYLAB: How Affordable Housing Design Strengthens Social Resilience

. . . and for further thoughts on urban resilience from another Canadian city with a world-class affordability problem, try: Resilient City, Toronto Style