Partners in a new supportive housing development in Abbotsford marked the beginning of construction today. Once complete, the 41-unit building will contain a mix of studio and one- to four-bedroom apartments for single women or women with children at risk of homelessness in the Fraser Valley.
The $10.3 million project is part of an agreement between the Province and the City of Abbotsford to create new affordable housing in the city. The Province provided a grant of approximately $8.9 million. The City provided the land valued at approximately $1.36 million and waived property taxes and development cost charges. Construction is expected to be complete by spring 2012.
The Women's Resource Society of the Fraser Valley (WRSFV), a non-profit society, will manage and operate the affordable apartments. For over 25 years, the WRSFV has been dedicated to providing and promoting the development of services that assist in the reduction of domestic violence against women and their children in the Fraser Valley including women's counselling, outreach and multicultural outreach, caregiver support, and children and youth support.
Last week, the province and city announced a proposed site for another development under their partnership agreement, the George Schmidt Centre, a 31 unit transitional housing project for men at risk of homelessness.
Michael de Jong, Minister of Health and MLA for Abbotsford West
"These apartments will give vulnerable women and their children the security and stability they need to regain their independence and rebuild their lives. Our strong partnerships with local governments and community agencies help make these projects a reality - helping us support families and build stronger communities."
George Peary, Mayor, City of Abbotsford
"The City of Abbotsford is committed to providing alternative housing opportunities for women and children at risk in our community. This new development on Clearbrook Road will have a long term and extremely positive impact for our community."
Pamela Willis, executive director of the Women's Resource Society of the Fraser Valley
"Today's celebration of construction puts us one step closer to improving the quality of life for vulnerable women and children in the Fraser Valley. Together, we can help women and their children live safe, stable, independent lives. We are proud to be making a difference in the lives of women and families in our community."
* Since the provincial housing strategy was launched in October 2006 the budget to provide affordable housing and fight homelessness has increased from $218 million to $521 million for 2011-12.
* In Abbotsford alone, the provincial government will invest more than $4.5 million this year to provide subsidized housing and rent supplements for low-income individuals, seniors and families.
* Since 2001, the provincial government has committed to build more than 21,600 new units of social housing - from supportive housing for the homeless to affordable rentals for individuals, seniors and families with lower incomes. More than 15,000 have been completed, over 4,100 are in development and another 1,866 have funding committed.
* These new housing developments are part of an overall $14-billion capital infrastructure program supported by the Province that is creating up to 88,000 jobs and building vital public infrastructure in every region of B.C.
* Visit www.bchousing.org/breakingthecycle to learn more about provincial programs and services to address homelessness.
Media contacts: Vincent Chou
604 454-5444 Katherine Jeffcoatt
City of Abbotsford
Connect with the Province of B.C. at www.gov.bc.ca/connect