Kamloops Wednesday, November 14, 2018 11:15 AM

Seniors, people with disabilities and people living with mental-health challenges will soon have access to new affordable rental homes, following the Spirit Square redevelopment.

The Province is partnering with the City of Kamloops, ASK Wellness Society, Interior Health Authority, Community Living BC and Arpa Investments to develop a new multi-use complex that will provide 43 units of new affordable rental housing.

“There is a critical need for affordable housing for people in Kamloops. The Spirit Square revitalization project, along with the 200 affordable homes in the three projects announced Tuesday, will help meet that need,” said Selina Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. “When we build housing that’s affordable it doesn’t just help the new tenants, it lifts the entire region up.”

Twenty-eight of the units will be designated for singles, seniors, persons with disabilities and people with mental-health issues living independently. The remaining 15 units will be reserved for people living with mental-health issues and receiving clinic care through Royal Inland Hospital.

The affordable units will be managed by the ASK Wellness Society, a respected local non-profit with considerable experience managing affordable rental housing and success working with people living with mental-health issues.

The redeveloped complex will also feature a building with 33 units of market housing and commercial space for local business owners. The project is scheduled to be complete by spring 2020.

Quotes:

Ken Christian, mayor, City of Kamloops –

“This project is an excellent example of what can happen when partners come together with a common goal of providing opportunities across the affordable housing continuum. This development will not only provide 43 permanent affordable rental homes, but it will also increase the supply of entry-level home ownership, and invigorate this already vibrant neighbourhood.”

Bob Hughes, executive director, ASK Wellness Society –

“ASK Wellness Society has long believed that the site for this project would be part of the revitalization of a vital part of the community. To join together with the Province of British Columbia, the City of Kamloops and a highly respected and visionary private developer like Arpa Investments to create 43 permanent affordable and safe housing units is truly an honour for our organization.”

Doug Cochrane, board chair, Interior Health Authority –

“We know that housing is an important social determinant of health. Access to safe and affordable housing is a significant contributing factor to one’s well-being. We look forward to the completion of this project. It will make a great difference in the lives of hundreds of Kamloops residents.”

Seonag Macrae, chief executive officer, Community Living BC –

“Community Living BC is very pleased to be part of an important collaboration that is increasing inclusive housing options for people with developmental disabilities in Kamloops. We applaud the investment by BC Housing, the vision of the City of Kamloops and the work of Arpa and Ask Wellness Society. When we create new, affordable housing that includes people with diverse backgrounds and abilities, the whole community benefits.”

Joshua Knaak, director, Arpa Investments –

“We were approached some time ago by someone commenting on the ‘gentrification’ of the North Shore. We quickly responded that we don’t see the work being done on the North Shore as gentrification — we see it as integration. Projects like Spirit Square are prime example of this community building and we are so pleased to work with ASK Wellness, BC Housing, the City of Kamloops and other stakeholders to see this taking place on Spirit Square.”

Quick Facts:

  • The Province is providing $4.7 million in capital funding for the affordable housing portion of the redevelopment.
  • This is the second project announced as part of a commitment between the City of Kamloops and BC Housing to build 98 units of affordable housing for people with low-to-moderate incomes.
  • This project is part of the Province’s commitment to build 114,000 affordable homes, including market rental, non-profit, supported social housing, co-op and owner-purchase housing through partnerships.
  • Budget 2018 launched the largest investment in housing affordability in B.C. history — more than $7 billion over 10 years.
  • The Province is building more than 14,000 much-needed affordable rental homes for people with low to middle incomes throughout the province through the Building BC: Community Housing Fund, including close to 200 homes at three projects in Kamloops.
  • As a part of the Building BC: Rapid Response to Homelessness program the Province has announced supportive modular housing for Kamloops at Victoria Street and Tranquille Road.
  • The program is a provincewide investment of $291 million to build 2,000 supportive homes around the province and more than $170 million over three years to provide 24/7 staffing and support services.
  • As part of Budget 2018, the Province launched the Supportive Housing Fund, which is an investment of $1.2 billion over 10 years to build 2,500 additional homes with 24/7 support to help people who are experiencing homelessness.

Learn More:

Read Homes for B.C., government’s 30-point plan to address housing affordability for British Columbians: bcbudget.gov.bc.ca/2018/homesbc/2018_Homes_For_BC.pdf

To find out what the Province is doing to improve housing affordability, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/factsheets/bc-government-addressing-housing-affordability-challenges

This on bc govt website click here

 

 

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