One B.C. city’s answer to speed up housing: Get humans out of the way
During his successful election campaign last year, Vancouver Mayor Ken Sim focused on speeding up housing production, including a memorable pledge to cut the permitting time for a house down to three weeks.
Kelowna’s leaders think they can beat that handily. Soon, they say, the city will be able to churn out a permit for a house in less than three minutes.
City of Kelowna staff believe they have found an effective and innovative way to improve and expedite the permitting process: artificial intelligence.
Kelowna is booming. It’s the hub of Canada’s fastest-growing metropolitan region, according to the most recent census, and the Okanagan city has also developed a reputation as a regional hub for the technology industry. Over the years, several media outlets, both inside and outside the Okanagan, have described Kelowna as “Canada’s Silicon Valley.” Wired, the best-known U.S. tech magazine, has referred to Kelowna, a little more imaginatively, as “Silicon Vineyard.”
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