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The original item was published from 5/12/2020 8:17:47 AM to 12/6/2020 12:00:00 AM.

News Flash

City News & Public Notices

Posted on: May 12, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Laneway House Designs Now Available for Purchase

Media Release

May 12, 2020

The City of Nelson is proud to announce that its pre-reviewed laneway house plans for three different designs are now available for purchase.

A set of plans costs $1,000 (plus GST) per-build within the City of Nelson. Each design includes one or more possible variations (for example, to make the house smaller or bigger) and can be adjusted to suit most sloped and flat lots.

Property owners are still free to submit their own custom designs. The pre-reviewed plans offer an additional choice, with the added benefits of a quicker application review process, a $450 development permit refund (in certain cases), and an award-winning design at a low cost.

For full details on how to acquire the plans, as well as more information on the designs, consult the Guide to Purchasing Pre-Reviewed Laneway House Plans at

The Designs:

In first place is the Kootenay Three-Step design, submitted by Tony Osborn Architecture + Design Inc. of Vancouver. The design provides variations ranging from 571 to 848 square-feet:

First Place

The second-place winner, which also received the “eco-choice” designation from the design review panel, is entitled ‘Nelson Peaks’, submitted by Tyler Reynolds & Adrienne Gerrits, Intern Architects (NSAA) of Halifax, Nova Scotia. It offers 850 square feet of living space:

second place

The third-place winner, which also received the “affordable choice” designation and won the “People’s Choice” award, is ‘The Pica’, designed by Carmen DiPasquale of SNT Engineering and Rod Taylor of Rod Taylor Design, both Nelson locals. The base design provides 400 square feet of living space, with options to add another 165 square-feet of building footprint and/or a basement:

third place

“Nelson will benefit in many ways from the addition of more laneway houses in our community, and this competition does its part by promoting high-quality designs at accessible prices to homeowners,” says Mayor John Dooley. “I am confident the winning designs will inspire more homeowners to build laneway housing while keeping design costs reasonable.”

The competition was launched in June 2019 and publicized across the country to solicit submissions of laneway house designs. To the City’s knowledge, this was the first competition of its kind in Canada. In the first open round of the competition, which closed in September 2019, twenty-nine entries were received from coast-to-coast, including nine submissions from West Kootenay-based entrants. The submissions were subject to a blind review (without knowledge of who the entrants were) by a five-member expert design review panel. Five were invited to participate in the second round. At the end of January 2020, the panel made its final award decisions. The three winning designs are now available to residents. They are pre-reviewed by the City, subject to foundation and siting adjustments in order to fit on a given lot, to help homeowners with the process of realizing a laneway house on their property.

The City anticipates that pre-reviewed designs will be most popular among those who would otherwise design their own laneway house without hiring a professional or seek to purchase stock plans online. The objective is to provide easy access to high-quality designs and code-compliant plans that strike the right balance between affordable construction and ecologically-sound design. They are designed for Nelson, offering exceptional value-for-money for homeowners.

For more information on the competition, visit

Media Contact:

Alex Thumm, Planner, Development Services – or (250) 352-8253

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