Province promises 4,900 affordable rental homes across B.C.
Published Tuesday, November 13, 2018 10:29AM PST
Last Updated Tuesday, November 13, 2018 7:13PM PST
The province has committed to building 4,902 new affordable mixed-income rental homes across B.C.
The 72 projects announced by the premier on Tuesday are expected to cost about $492 million, part of a $1.9-billion provincial investment over 10 years. They're scheduled to be completed over the next two or three years. Scroll down or click here for the full list.
"For decades, we've had an increasing crisis when it comes to affordable housing in British Columbia and I think it reached a peak last year during the election campaign," Premier John Horgan said at a news conference in Vancouver.
During that campaign, Horgan promised to build 114,000 new units over 10 years in the form of co-op, rental, not-for-profit and market-based housing. When the government released its 30-point housing plan, it promised nearly 37,000 new homes through direct government funding.
The rental suites announced Tuesday will be the first set of projects built using a new housing fund, which the NDP says will see the development of more than 14,000 affordable homes in the next decade.
Premier John Horgan campaigned on a promise to build 114,000 new units over 10 years in the form of co-op, rental, not-for-profit and market-based housing.
The housing is geared toward low- and middle-income earners, families and seniors located in 42 communities.
A list posted by the province showed 29 projects planned for Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley – a total of 2,877 homes.
Another 20 developments are planned for Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands, 17 for the Interior and six in the northern part of the province.
Individual buildings will contain units aimed at a mix of income levels, the province said, and will include deeply subsidized rentals for those on fixed incomes. The housing complexes will include non-profit and co-op options.
"Years of inaction on the B.C. housing crisis left families struggling to get by and unable to get ahead," Premier John Horgan said. "These new, affordable rental homes are an important step toward addressing the housing crisis and giving families in every part of the province a break from skyrocketing housing costs."
The projects were selected through a request for proposals made in April, and were chosen based on criteria including the impact they could have on reducing the need for affordable housing.
Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart called the announcement a "landmark investment." With a near-zero vacancy rate, the city has been promised 10 projects containing 1,101 homes including some earmarked for people with HIV/AIDS, and others for seniors with mental health challenges.
Investments will also be made for housing for individuals and families.
In addition to the homes announced Tuesday, the province has already started work on 1,700 affordable rental homes announced last year, and has completed more than 560 modular supportive homes out of its promised 2,000.
Last month, it announced about 280 homes for women and children fleeing violence, and another 1,100 homes are underway under other initiatives.
Remaining housing projects under the 37,000-home commitment will be built through provincial partnerships that include the national housing strategy, investments from local governments, funding from transit and partnerships with non-profits and developers, the ministry said in a statement to CTV.
An interactive map shows the locations of all 72 projects announced Tuesday. Scroll down to view the projects in list form.
With files from CTV Vancouver's Bhinder Sajan and Jon Woodward