BC Housing acts on recommendations from Maple Ridge supportive housing sites review
Maple Ridge - An independent review of three supportive housing sites in Maple Ridge includes recommendations to improve the services and safety of the residents.
The supportive housing facility Royal Crescent was built in 2018 and was always intended as a temporary emergency solution to provide housing for people sheltering at the Anita Place encampment in Maple Ridge.
The report identifies that Royal Crescent was not built to operate as long-term supportive housing and is being replaced by a new permanent building that is under construction. Once the new permanent homes are open, the Royal Crescent site will be shut down.
“BC Housing is committed to addressing the recommendations to ensure that residents are getting the services they need to improve their lives in a safe and secure environment,” said Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Housing. “We’re replacing Royal Crescent, have already taken action to improve safety and health supports at all three supportive housing sites in Maple Ridge and are actively working with partners to find more opportunities to strengthen the delivery of supportive housing in the community.”
Unlike the majority of the Province’s supportive housing facilities, Royal Crescent was not purpose-built to operate as supportive housing. The new permanent supportive housing that will replace Royal Crescent is being purpose-built to make it easier to operate safely and better able to provide care for residents to address many of the challenges faced at the Royal Crescent site.
The review of Royal Crescent was directed by the former minister responsible for housing, David Eby, following operational concerns brought forward by community members. External consulting firm Harry Cummings and Associates Inc. led the review, which was expanded to examine operations at all three supportive housing sites in Maple Ridge: Royal Crescent, Garibaldi Ridge and Alouette Heights, which are operated by Coast Mental Health.
The report includes recommendations for BC Housing, Coast Mental Health, the City of Maple Ridge, the Province and other community supports and services. BC Housing will work with Coast Mental Health, the City of Maple Ridge, the Province, including Fraser Health, and other community partners to collectively address the feedback highlighted in the review and to continue to strengthen services to the residents of the three supportive housing sites in Maple Ridge.
A number of changes were implemented after issues were first raised at the current supportive housing sites that improve building safety, health services and resident supports, and align with the report’s recommendations. This includes:
- repaired perimeter fencing and added additional fencing around the inner courtyard to strengthen site security;
- added consistent nursing hours, provided seven days a week across all three sites;
- introduction of the Assertive Community Treatment team, Intensive Case Management team are now delivering expanded mental-health and substance-use services to residents who need those services at all three sites;
- opened new complex care housing spaces in Maple Ridge for people who need more intensive mental-health and addictions supports than are provided in supportive housing;
- increased wellness checks for residents from every 48 hours to every 24 hours at minimum and more frequent wellness checks are available in discussion with individuals;
- launched the Decolonizing Coast Working Group and hired an Indigenous liaison worker; and
- added a Coast Mental Health van to transport clients to medical appointments and other support services in the community.
BC Housing has also made changes to the way people transition out of encampments and into supportive housing to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone who is housed and to balance tenant needs in each building.
The review sought input from supportive housing residents and staff, BC Housing, Coast Mental Health, the City of Maple Ridge, police and local service providers.
Bob D’Eith, MLA for Maple Ridge-Mission –
“The provincial government and its partners are committed to improving services at Royal Crescent to ensure that residents feel welcome, safe and valued. A new purpose-built facility that is designed specifically for supportive housing will replace Royal Crescent next year. In the meantime, our government is committed to getting people facing homelessness the supports they need to live fulfilling lives.”
Lisa Beare, MLA for Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows –
“Improving the services that residents are receiving at these supportive housing sites will also support the surrounding community. The Province, through BC Housing, looks forward to working with the City of Maple Ridge to continue to build the housing that residents need.”
Anil Singh, board chair, Coast Mental Health –
“This new facility will be a significant improvement from the temporary mobile homes that have reached their end of service. While the decision to replace this housing occurred prior to the government review, the space created by the review process, and the report recommendations, have created more transparency around the challenges faced by many non-profit housing providers. We now look forward to working with BC Housing to establish action plans and timelines to address the housing and health-care needs of vulnerable populations living in Maple Ridge.”
- Royal Crescent is a temporary modular supportive housing building that has provided 53 homes with supports for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness in the community since October 2018.
- It is scheduled to be replaced by a new permanent building under construction on lots 11685-11695 Fraser St. and 11686 224th St.
- Once the Royal Crescent site is vacated, BC Housing will work with partners, including the City of Maple Ridge, to ensure it can move forward on new seniors housing.
- Since 2017, the Province has more than 76,000 homes that have been delivered or are underway, including more than 400 homes in Maple Ridge.
To view the full report, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/MapleRidgeSupportiveHousingReview.pdf
To see BC Housing’s response plan against each of the recommendations, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/MapleRidgeOperationalReviewResponse.pdf
To learn about the steps the Province is taking to tackle the housing crisis and deliver affordable homes for British Columbians, visit: https://strongerbc.gov.bc.ca/housing/