Finance Sustainable Buildings

(Net) Zero Emissions Building Catalyst Policy

Type of instrument



Short term


The (Net) Zero Emissions Building Catalyst Policy is a set of economic and regulatory measures to facilitate (net) zero-emissions buildings that the City of Vancouver have been using since 2019. The City may consider using discretion to ease some of the existing regulations, policies and guidelines and relax or vary height, area, uses, a number of units, density and other built form guidelines. The most applicable one is the relaxation of the allowed floor area up to 5% more and increasing density to facilitate more and smaller dwelling units.

Applicable for new buildings and retrofit.

Socioeconomic impacts

For developers, this solution would be easier to achieve financially balanced developments while providing more affordable sustainable houses. For customers, this would mean having more variety of choices and better performing houses in the market.


Further legislation and regulations on maximum price, dwelling size, density, communal space area etc. should be implemented in order to avoid overcrowding and property speculation

Related to

Sufficiency. Aiming at re-densifying the city, these policies were implemented to allow more units in Vancouver’s single-family neighbourhoods where only detached housing is allowed.