09:01 AM

Affordable Homes for Indigenous People Open in Nanaimo

NANAIMO - Indigenous people in Nanaimo now have access to new affordable rental homes resulting from a partnership between the governments of Canada and British Columbia, Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre, City of Nanaimo and the Regional District of Nanaimo.

The Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre's new townhome development at 1406 Bowen Rd., features 25 units of housing for elders, youth transitioning to independent living and families with young children. The development also includes amenities such as a common room for cultural gatherings, children's play area, a community garden and courtyard. The housing is also Passive House Certified, which incorporates initiatives and technologies that reduce energy use and operational costs over conventional building standards.

Adam Vaughan, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Doug Routley, Member of the Legislative Assembly for Nanaimo-North Cowichan on behalf of the Honourable Selina Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, Mayor Bill McKay, City of Nanaimo, along with representatives from Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre made the announcement today.


"Through construction of new rental housing like this, we're building vibrant, inclusive communities across the country. Working closely with Indigenous partners, municipalities and provinces and territories, our Government is taking action to increase supply of new rental developments, and create housing options that are close to public transit, schools and services for hard-working Canadian families." — Adam Vaughan, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development

"Access to safe, affordable housing for Indigenous people is an essential part of building strong, inclusive communities. The inclusion of family facilities and space for Indigenous cultural gatherings shows that housing isn't just about providing a roof over peoples' heads, it's about creating a vibrant heart for community life." — Scott Fraser, Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation.

"Working in partnership to help build more affordable homes is a strong focus of our government. These homes and their amenities will help strengthen the local community and benefit the families and elders who will call this place home." — Doug Routley, Member of the Legislative Assembly for Nanaimo-North Cowichan

"I am so pleased to see a project completed that serves a need for affordable housing in our community. It is a wonderful contribution to the City's housing strategy." — Mayor Bill McKay, City of Nanaimo

"We thank all our funding partners for making this new concept for Indigenous housing a reality. Nuutsumuut Lelum (All in One House) combines traditional Indigenous design with Passive House Certified technologies, to create sustainable and affordable homes, with cultural connections in an urban setting." — Chris Beaton, Executive Director, Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre

Quick facts:

  • The two-storey wood frame building consists of 3 two-bedroom, 12 three-bedroom, 4 bachelor and 6 one-bedroom townhouse style units.
  • The Government of Canada through CMHC and the Government of British Columbia through BC Housing contributed approximately $4.6 million under the Social Infrastructure Fund.
  • The City of Nanaimo transferred land valued at $770,000 to the Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre, waived construction fees and forgave development cost levies, totalling $221,000.
  • Regional District of Nanaimo provided a grant of $15,000 for Passive House design.

Associated links:

As Canada's authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers unbiased housing research and advice to all levels of Canadian government, consumers and the housing industry. For more information, please visit cmhc.ca or follow CMHC on Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.

To find out more about the National Housing Strategy, visit www.placetocallhome.ca 

Read Homes for B.C., the provincial government's 30-point plan to address housing affordability for British Columbians: bcbudget.gov.bc.ca/2018/homesbc/2018_Homes_For_BC.pdf

To find out what the Province is doing to improve housing affordability, visit: news.gov.bc.ca/factsheets/bc-government-addressing-housing-affordability-challenges

For further information:

Michael Brewster
Office of Minister Duclos

Leonard Catling
Media Relations, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Lindsay Byers
Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing

Rajvir Rao
BC Housing