A partnership between the Province, Indigenous housing partners and the City of Colwood will soon provide more than 120 new, affordable rental homes for Indigenous families in the area.
“We know from our intensive work to address long-standing housing issues in B.C. that the struggle to find a good home can be even greater for Indigenous peoples who are overwhelmingly over-represented among people in B.C. experiencing homelessness,” said Mitzi Dean, MLA for Esquimalt-Metchosin. “That’s why we are partnering with Indigenous organizations and municipalities throughout the province to build the homes that Indigenous families need in our community and at prices they can afford.”
The Province is partnering with the Aboriginal Land Trust Society (ALT), Huu-ay-aht First Nations and the City of Colwood to build 124 affordable homes for Indigenous individuals and families at 342 Wale Rd.
“The Aboriginal Land Trust Society was established in part to ensure financial support could be seamlessly secured for the development of much-needed affordable housing throughout the province,” said Claire Marshall, board director, Aboriginal Land Trust Society. “With the addition of the Colwood project into our portfolio, ALT will be a stronger, more efficient and an effective non-profit organization with increased capacity and economies of scale in our operations. This project also represents the opportunity to broaden our scope of service delivery to better serve the needs of our clients.
Aboriginal Land Trust Society will work with Yellowridge Construction to develop the building and partner with the Huu-ay-aht First Nations for tenant selection and ongoing management of the new affordable housing project.
“I am very proud to give our support for this project,” said Chief Robert Dennis, Huu-ay-aht First Nations. “This project is desperately needed to address the affordable housing challenges facing Indigenous families in the area. This is an opportunity for all of us to work together to make things better for the less fortunate in B.C.”
The project is part of the first series of projects selected to receive funding through the Building BC: Indigenous Housing Fund, a 10-year, $550-million investment to build and operate 1,750 new units of social housing, on- and off-reserve in B.C.
“The City of Colwood is grateful for this investment in our community and pleased to partner with the Province and Aboriginal Land Trust Society on this new housing,” said Rob Martin, mayor, City of Colwood. “This community project will enhance the diversity of housing in Colwood, create local jobs and add new vibrancy to our town centre.”
Construction is expected to start in summer 2019.
- Through the Building BC: Indigenous Housing Fund, the B.C. government will invest approximately $24.8 million in capital funding for the development.
- The Indigenous Housing Fund was launched in Budget 2018 as part of the Province’s 30-point housing plan, with British Columbia becoming the first province to fund Indigenous housing both on- and off-reserve.
- Budget 2018 made the largest investment in affordable housing in B.C.’s history — more than $7 billion over 10 years. Through this investment, the Province will work in partnership to create 114,000 new, affordable homes.
- Through the new Building BC housing funds, the Province is investing $140 million for 1,100 units of affordable housing throughout the Capital Regional District. This includes:
- Community Housing Fund: $100 million for more than 900 homes
- Indigenous Housing Fund: $33 million for more than 160 homes
- Women’s Transition Housing Fund: $7 million for 20 homes
Building BC: Indigenous Housing Fund: https://www.bchousing.org/partner-services/Building-BC/indigenous-housing-fund
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