People in Squamish will soon have more affordable homes to choose from, with construction underway on a 76-unit rental housing project in the community.
“We know there’s an urgent need for affordable rental housing in Squamish,” said David Eby, Attorney General and Minister Responsible for Housing. “This new development will provide more quality, affordable homes for individuals and families in the community, so people aren’t forced to move away to find affordable housing.”
Sea to Sky Community Services Society will operate the new homes. The society is receiving $8 million in capital funding from the Province’s Building BC: Community Housing Fund.
Located at 38648 Buckley Ave., the five-storey development will feature a mix of studio, one- and two-bedroom rental homes for people with low to moderate incomes. The District of Squamish will lease the land to the society at a nominal rate for a period of 60 years.
The site will also include a Foundry Centre, which will provide young people ages 12 to 24 and their families access to mental health care, substance-use services, primary care, social services and peer supports. Funding for the Foundry Centre is provided by the Province as part of A Pathway to Hope, B.C.’s roadmap for making mental health and addictions care better for people in B.C.
These services will be delivered under one roof by a range of community partners. Cultural supports will be embedded within these services for youth who self-identify as Indigenous. While the centre is being built, young people in the Sea to Sky corridor can access Foundry services virtually through Foundry Virtual, which is available throughout B.C.
On Friday, Feb. 26, 2021, at 2p.m., members of the Squamish Nation will perform a traditional Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) blessing ceremony, acknowledging the land and partnership of the housing project and Foundry Sea to Sky.
The building is scheduled to open in summer 2022.
The Province is working in partnership to increase the supply of affordable rental housing in Squamish for people at a range of income levels. Including this project, 181 homes are complete or underway in Squamish. This includes a 67-unit project for people with middle incomes, currently under construction at 38012 3rd Ave: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2021AG0003-000085
Bowinn Ma, MLA for North Vancouver-Lonsdale –
“After years where the old government ignored people’s housing needs in Squamish, projects like this are long overdue. Our government has been acting quickly to build more housing for people in Squamish and throughout the province. This new project will see even more people move into safe and secure homes they can afford in their community.”
Karen Elliott, mayor, District of Squamish –
“This project will be a legacy for Squamish and is the result of strong collaboration to leverage and maximize the resources each of the major partners has brought to the table. Not only does the project provide 76 affordable rental units to Squamish residents who need it most, but it will also provide an important resource for Squamish youth. The building will house the new Foundry Sea to Sky, creating easy access for youth and young adults to get the supports they need. A great amount of hard work and creativity by all partners has gone into getting to this point and I extend my gratitude to all those involved.”
Jaye Russell, executive director, Sea to Sky Community Services Society –
“We are so proud and honoured to be working with our community members and partners to bring these much-needed services to Squamish. Population growth in the region is quickly outpacing our ability to meet basic needs, like housing and social services for people living in our community. We are so grateful to our partners at Squamish Nation for offering a traditional Skwxwú7mesh land blessing to both acknowledge and set the intention for this unique, collaborative partnership between BC Housing, the District of Squamish, Foundry and Sea to Sky Community Services Society.”
- The Community Housing Fund is part of the Province’s 10-year, $7-billion housing plan.
- It is an investment of $1.9 billion to build more than 14,000 affordable rental homes for low- and moderate-income families and individuals over 10 years. More than 6,100 of these homes are already open, under construction or in development.
- The Community Housing Fund supports mixed-income buildings where 50% of the units are for households with annual incomes up to $64,000, 30% of the units are for households with incomes up to approximately $74,000, and 20% of the units are for households with very low incomes (including those on income or disability assistance).
A map showing the location of all announced provincially funded housing projects in B.C. is available online: https://www.bchousing.org/homes-for-BC
To learn about the steps the Province is taking to tackle the housing crisis and deliver affordable homes for British Columbians, visit: https://workingforyou.gov.bc.ca/