People experiencing or at risk of homelessness in Vernon will soon have access to 52 safe and secure homes as construction begins on a new supportive housing project in the community.
"Housing is a basic need of everyone and I am pleased with the work of the Province in Vernon-Monashee to address local housing needs. These additional units will have a significant impact on the lives of people that will call this place home for years to come,” said Harwinder Sandhu, MLA for Vernon-Monashee. “We are grateful to be working with community partners in Vernon to provide stable homes with supports for people experiencing homelessness.”
The Crossings @ 35th will provide 52 units, including three one-bedroom units for couples and eight accessible or adaptable units. Each unit will include a private washroom and kitchen.
Located at 3500 27th St., the building will be the second and final phase of the My Place supportive housing development, which opened to residents in 2019. Together, these projects will result in 104 homes with supports for people in need.
The Crossings will be operated by Turning Points Collaborative Society, an experienced non-profit group that operates several other temporary and permanent supportive homes and shelters in Vernon and around the Okanagan, including My Place. Staff will be on site 24 hours a day to provide supports, such as daily meals, skills training and access to work placement, as well as health, mental health and addictions services.
“We are grateful to be a part of this incredible project,” said Randene Wejr, executive director, Turning Points Collaborative Society. “We knew when the original announcement was made last summer for this additional supportive housing project that the need for housing was high. But now, at the tail end of the COVID-19 pandemic and in the midst of a housing and opioid crisis, the need has grown exponentially. Our partnership with BC Housing and the City of Vernon is something we are incredibly proud of. We believe that our collective vision to care for our most vulnerable citizens is making a tremendous difference in the City of Vernon and is what makes our community strong.”
The building will include a commercial kitchen, dining room, laundry and storage space. Landscaped outdoor spaces will provide definition between private and public areas surrounding the building for the privacy and safety of the residents.
“Since the opening of My Place, we have heard many stories from residents about the positive impact supportive housing has had on their lives,” said Victor Cumming, mayor, City of Vernon. “Safe, accessible and secure housing is a critical piece of the puzzle when addressing community needs. Therefore, the city is grateful for the ongoing, collaborative partnerships we have with organizations such as Turning Points Collaborative Society and BC Housing to identify and develop suitable affordable and sustainable housing solutions for Vernon.”
The Province is providing approximately $14.6 million for the project through the Building BC: Supportive Housing Fund and will provide approximately $1.2 million in annual operating funding.
People are expected to start moving into their homes in spring 2022.
People can find out more information about the project and submit their questions and comments online: https://letstalkhousingbc.ca/vernon-supportive-housing
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/
Turning Points has been operating in the Okanagan for more than 50 years providing housing, programming, and services for people at risk and/or experiencing homelessness. More information can be found here: http://turningpoints.ngo