Province makes $23M investment in three Vernon properties to enhance affordable housing - InfoNews

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Province makes $23M investment in three Vernon properties to enhance affordable housing

Housing Minister Selina Robinson speaks with Vernon Mayor Akbal Mund and Martin Gardner, director of operations with the Vancouver Resource Society.
April 05, 2018 - 2:04 PM

VERNON - The provincial government will purchase and fix up two apartment buildings in Vernon and develop a third property for low-income housing.

Minister of Housing Selina Robinson made the $23 million investment announcement at a press conference today, April 5, in Vernon.

"As with the rest of the province, Vernon is struggling with an alarmingly low vacancy rate. That is why our government is moving quickly to get more affordable rental stock in the market for the people who need it most," Robinson says. "This project is a combination of new builds and redevelopment, making sure more families and seniors have access to affordable housing in Vernon.”

Two apartment buildings, located at 3800 and 3802 27 Ave., will undergo fire safety upgrades and other improvements, making living arrangements better for those who currently live there. Those buildings contain roughly 70 units and current renters will be able to stay for their existing rents, Robinson said.

A new, four-storey, 41-unit building will be built next to the existing apartments, and will provide a mix of one and two-bedroom units, which will include in-suite laundry and other amenities. Roughly six of these units will be accessible for people with disabilities.

Vernon Mayor Akbal Mund says he’s very pleased to see the investment in affordable housing.

"Local government can't address the homelessness problem on its own. We are committed to working with our partners to protect affordable housing and provide new housing in the community,” Mund says.

The two existing apartment buildings will be operated by the Vancouver Resource Society. The society will also co-own and oversee the development of the new building.

"This project, in partnership with the province, will enable us to expand our affordable rental housing program to residents of Vernon, including our client group: people with disabilities," Ken Fraser, executive director of Vancouver Resource Society says.

Construction is expected to begin in the coming months. Rental rates for the new development are expected to be about $787 for a one bedroom and $962 for a two bedroom.

The announcement comes less than six months after Robinson unveiled plans for a significant modular housing project in Vernon to combat homelessness. 

LOCATION OF PROPERTIES

— This story was updated at 10 a.m. April 6, 2018 to add more information. 


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