Media Contacts

Sean Leslie

Communications Director
Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training
250 893-4403


Post-secondary housing investments in B.C.
  • The Okanagan college mass timber student housing will consist of:
    • Kelowna: two buildings, 216 beds, worth $36.4 million
    • Vernon: one building, 100 beds, worth $18 million
    • Salmon Arm: two buildings, 60 beds, worth $13.1 million
  • Construction of the project is expected to start in fall 2021 and be completed in fall 2023.
  • The Province is investing $450 million through a loan program to contribute to the construction of approximately 5,000 student beds over six years.
  • An additional 3,000 student beds will be built through non-government partnerships and institutional self-financing, for a total of about 8,000 new beds by 2028.
  • As of March 2021, approximately 5,000 new student beds were underway or completed.
  • In mass timber buildings, the primary load-bearing structure is made of solid, engineered wood. These buildings can be one-fifth the weight of comparable concrete buildings, while still meeting performance standards for safety, structural resilience and fire protection.
  • The BC Energy Step Code is a provincial standard intended to provide an incremental approach to achieving more energy-efficient buildings that will help the Province meet its goal of having all new buildings be net zero energy ready by the year 2032. Step 4 of the BC Energy Step Code achieves an energy cost savings of approximately 40% compared to constructing to a LEED Gold standard.