The Province, through BC Housing, has started a planning and feasibility study to support the redevelopment of the 175-unit Evergreen Terrace affordable housing complex in Victoria.
"The aging homes at Evergreen Terrace have given 175 families affordable homes in Victoria for decades. This study will help us make sure these, and hopefully even more families have access to high-quality housing on this site," said David Eby, Attorney General and Minister Responsible for Housing. "Redeveloping aging rental properties into modern, affordable homes for a range of incomes while ensuring existing tenants are protected leaves everyone better off and supports the health of the whole community."
Located at 2501 Blanshard St., Evergreen Terrace (formerly called Blanshard Court) needs redevelopment as its units are aging and require substantial renovations. The two-year study will determine how to best replace these homes and whether the site can accommodate more affordable housing.
Evergreen Terrace is owned and operated by BC Housing and has provided low-income housing for Victoria seniors and families for more than 50 years. In 2020, Spaken House, a 21-unit temporary, culturally supportive housing building for Indigenous women operated by the Aboriginal Coalition to End Homelessness Society, was added to the site.
The study is in its early stages. Tenants and community partners, as well as Spaken House residents and staff, have received project information packages and will have the opportunity to provide input and ideas to shape development plans for the property. Given the multi-year nature of the redevelopment process, there is no need to temporarily relocate Evergreen Terrace tenants at this time and tenants are not at risk of losing their homes because of redevelopment.
Upon completion of the planning and feasibility study, a rezoning application will be submitted to the City of Victoria. If the redevelopment project is approved, tenants will be supported to stay in their homes, if possible, until the new homes are completed. Existing tenants will be given the opportunity to choose new units with no changes to their monthly rent unless their income or unit size has changed in the interim.
Rob Fleming, MLA for Victoria-Swan Lake –
"Evergreen Terrace is an important part of the community that, for more than 50 years, provided affordable homes for families and seniors, and connection points to services, school and work in the neighbourhood. I look forward to the opportunity to work with existing tenants, the Aboriginal Coalition to End Homelessness, community members and stakeholders to develop a renewed vision for its vital future in our community."
Lisa Helps, mayor, City of Victoria –
"It is exciting to see the planning for the redevelopment of Evergreen Terrace underway. This is a large site on a major corridor and a bike route. Redevelopment of Evergreen Terrace has the opportunity to increase the supply of much-needed affordable homes in our city. We commend BC Housing for taking steps to avoid tenant displacement during the redevelopment and for working with the entire community to make this site a model for 21st-century liveability at the same time as providing much-needed affordable homes."
Fran Hunt-Jinnouchi, director of housing development and research, Aboriginal Coalition to End Homelessness Society –
"Spaken House, meaning 'house of flowers,' has been in operation for just over one year, and to date we have seen positive strides related to the health and well-being of the family members. Spaken House provides a safe space for Indigenous women to create a sense of place, community and family. Priority is given to those fleeing violence and experiencing gender-based violence with programming focused on health and wellness. The Aboriginal coalition is pleased with the continued progress being made and welcomes the opportunity to be part of the visioning and planning for Evergreen Terrace over the coming years, with hopes to increase our ability to provide more housing and services in a permanent, purpose-built Spaken House residential building."
- The Province, through BC Housing, is investing $467,000 to the redevelopment of the property, which will go toward due diligence, feasibility, planning, stakeholder consultation and design development work.
- A project budget will be determined once designs and a timeline are in place.
- Evergreen Terrace was one of the last large-scale public housing redevelopment projects constructed under the federally sanctioned Urban Renewal Program under the 1954 National Housing Act.
- It is the largest of 12 sites managed by BC Housing in Victoria.
More information about the study can be found at: www.letstalkhousingbc.ca/victoriaevergreen-terrace.
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/