New affordable homes on the way for people in Keremeos
KEREMEOS – More families and seniors in Keremeos will have an affordable place to call home thanks to a partnership between the Province and the Lower Similkameen Community Services Society.
“People shouldn’t be forced to leave the communities they call home to find the affordable housing they need,” said Premier John Horgan. “That is why we are working hard to build affordable homes in Keremeos and other small, hardworking communities throughout British Columbia.”
The Lower Similkameen Community Services Society is receiving $4.1 million from the Province’s Building BC: Community Housing Fund to build 41 much-needed new homes for people with low to moderate incomes. Projected monthly rental rates will range between $375 and $1,440.
“Through the Community Housing Fund, we are addressing gaps in the market, creating the types of homes that people can afford – from growing families to seniors on fixed incomes,” said Selina Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. “And our progress to date has been made possible because of the commitment of partners like Lower Similkameen Community Services Society.”
Located at 715 - 7th St., the proposed project will be designed to include one-, two- and three-bedroom units, including several accessible homes. The three-storey building will also have commercial space on the ground floor for the society’s community service programs and offices.
“The Village of Keremeos very much appreciates the investment the Province is making to provide for more affordable housing in Keremeos,” said Manfred Bauer, mayor, Village of Keremeos. “Council will continue to support this collaborative approach and is looking forward to future projects.”
The society has recently purchased land for the project, which will go through a rezoning process. A public information session will be held as part of that process in July 2019. Construction is expected to start in spring 2020.
“On behalf of the communities of Keremeos, Cawston, Hedley and Olalla, Lower Similkameen Community Services Society is honoured to partner with the Province and the Village of Keremeos to develop more affordable housing in our community under the Community Housing Fund,” said Sarah Martin, executive director, Lower Similkameen Community Services Society. “The social, health and economic benefits of affordable housing for individuals, families and communities are well known. Through our work providing a diversity of programs and services within the community, we are acutely aware of the need for more affordable housing units, across the demographics. We are grateful for this opportunity to provide more safe, affordable and adaptive homes for our community members.”
This project is part of more than 20,000 new homes completed or underway throughout B.C. as a result of provincial investments, including more than 5,000 homes in mixed-income buildings for people with a range of low, moderate and middle incomes through the Community Housing Fund.
The Province is tackling the housing crisis in British Columbia by increasing supply, curbing demand and cracking down on fraud in real estate.
Delivering affordable housing is a shared commitment between government and the B.C. Green Party caucus and is part of the Confidence and Supply Agreement.
- This housing development is part of the first series of projects selected to receive funding through the Building BC: Community Housing Fund, a $1.9-billion investment over 10 years to build more than 14,000 affordable rental homes for people with low and middle incomes.
- Projects built under the Community Housing Fund will reflect the following mix of incomes:
- 30% of the units will be for middle-income households (with annual incomes up to approximately $107,000).
- 50% of the units will be for a range of low- to moderate-income householdsb(incomes below the housing income limits, which range from $21,000 to $96,000. Housing income limits represent the income needed to pay the average market rent in a specific community).
- 20% of the units will be for households with low incomes (up to $30,000).
- The Community Housing Fund was launched in Budget 2018 as part of the Province’s 30-point housing plan.
A map showing the location of all announced provincially-funded housing projects in B.C. is now available online: https://www.bchousing.org/homes-for-BC
To find out what the Province is doing to improve housing affordability, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/factsheets/bc-government-addressing-housing-affordability-challenges
A backgrounder follows.
Office of the Premier
Province building new homes to meet full spectrum of housing needs
The B.C. government is working in partnership to build 114,000 affordable homes that cover the full spectrum of housing needs for British Columbians by 2028.
Budget 2018 included a $7-billion investment in the homes people need. As a result of that investment, more than 20,000 new homes are completed, under construction or in the approvals process for a range of people that are struggling to find a place to live — from people who are experiencing homelessness and seniors on fixed incomes, to middle-income families, students and individuals. To date, this includes:
Housing for middle-income earners (households with annual incomes between $50,000 and $150,000) – approximately 2,460 homes:
- Building BC: Community Housing Fund: approximately 1,500 rental homes for people with middle incomes.
- HousingHub: 960 homes.
Housing for people with low to moderate incomes (including some where rents are based on 30% of household income and others with set rents, which are designed to be affordable to moderate-income households, in most cases earning less that $70,000 annually) – approximately 9,200 homes:
- Building BC: Community Housing Fund: approximately 3,700 rental homes for people with low to moderate incomes.
- Affordable Rental Housing Program: nearly 1,600 homes for low to moderate incomes.
- Deepening Affordability Fund: more than 2,100 homes for low to moderate incomes.
- Building BC: Indigenous Housing Fund: more than 1,150 homes for Indigenous peoples, on and off reserve.
- Regional Housing First Program: more than 600 homes for people with low to moderate incomes.
Housing for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness (shelter-rate housing) – approximately 2,800 homes:
- Rapid Response for Homelessness: more than 2,000 homes with 24/7 support.
- Building BC: Supportive Housing Fund: more than 550 homes with 24/7 support.
- Regional Housing First Program: more than 170 homes for those ready to live independently with supports.
Housing for women and children leaving violence – approximately 340 homes:
- Building BC: Women’s Transition Housing Fund: approximately 340 spaces of transition, second-stage and affordable rental housing for women and children leaving violence.
Housing for students – approximately 5,600 homes:
- BC Student Housing Loan Program: approximately 2,700 on-campus student housing units are underway or in the approvals process.
- Nearly 2,900 student housing units are also underway or in development through partnerships with post-secondary institutions.
Total: approximately 20,400 homes
Office of the Premier