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Environmentally friendly Vancouver housing project aims to tackle affordability


A new project in Vancouver aims to combat climate change while providing affordable housing options.

Vienna House is being built on the corner of Victoria Drive and Stainsbury Avenue in East Vancouver.

The development is projected to have 123 units, including 56 designated for families, with a mixture of shelter, low-income and average market rental units.

Once completed, the building will be owned and operated by More than a Roof Housing Society.

The province says there will be 29 studios, 37 one-bedrooms, 35 two-bedrooms, 16 three-bedrooms and six four-bedrooms.

Approximately 20 per cent of the new units will be geared towards shelter rates, 50 per cent to income, while 30 per cent will be affordable market rentals.

In 2023, Vancouver’s vacancy rate for purpose built units was below one per cent and the average rent soared 8.5 per cent. According to the Canadian Mortgage Housing Corporation, the average rent for a two bedroom unit is $2,181.

Vienna House will be built using mass timber and prefabricated wall, floor and ceiling components. It will reduce emissions during construction, while also storing carbon and reducing landfill construction waste by 75 per cent, according to the province.

The B.C. government also says using electric appliances and hot water will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 90 per cent.

The Vienna House gets its namesake from Vienna, Austria, which is also a part of the project.

The Austrian capital is collaborating with the City of Vancouver and the province to share ideas, expertise and resources as it builds a similar affordable housing project that Mayor Ken Sim says will be named Vancouver House.

BC Housing is providing approximately $22.2 million through its community housing fund and cost pressure grant.

The City of Vancouver is chipping-in $13 million in combined land equity and waivers. Top Stories

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