09:44 AM

New partnership will mean new homes and community services

NANAIMO – More affordable housing and improved community services will soon come to the Fifth Street corridor as a result of a new partnership.

The Province, the City of Nanaimo and the Board of Education of School District No. 68 have signed a new agreement to identify opportunities for housing, recreation and educational facilities on three adjacent parcels of publicly owned land at 502 and 505 Howard Ave., and 564 Fifth St.

“Our government is committed to bringing together partners where there’s an opportunity to use available land to meet a community’s needs, including building more affordable housing for families,” said Selina Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. “Whether it’s through our new Housing Hub, our partnerships with non-profits in the three Community Housing Fund projects here in Nanaimo, or agreements like this, we are committed to working together to make life better for people in communities around B.C.”

Shared priorities for the properties include:

  • new affordable rental housing;
  • a new location for the learning alternative school program;
  • the integration of parks and recreation services; and
  • the incorporation of other community services, such as health services and child care.

“This project is an excellent example of partnerships working together to benefit the community,” said Leonard Krog, mayor, City of Nanaimo. “The Fifth Street corridor will provide needed amenities and services to the Harewood neighbourhood.”

Initial planning and public consultation is expected to be completed by summer 2020.

"The Nanaimo Ladysmith Public School's Board of Education is extremely pleased to continue its partnership with the City of Nanaimo," said Charlene McKay, board chair. "With the addition of BC Housing, this initiative will greatly benefit not only our learning alternative students, but the community as a whole."

The public will be notified and invited to provide input in the planning process.


Rob Fleming, Minister of Education –

“All students benefit from strong and supportive communities that set them up for future success. I’m pleased we’re working with the City of Nanaimo, the local school district and BC Housing to collaborate on such an important project that will make a positive difference in the lives of local students and their families for years to come.”

Doug Routley, MLA for Nanaimo-North Cowichan –

“This partnership is a testament of what we can achieve when governments and communities come together to ensure that people have the housing and services they need. I’m looking forward to working closely with the city and the school board on this project to help make life better for people in Nanaimo.”

Quick Facts:

  • To address the issue of housing affordability for British Columbians, the Province is curbing speculation in B.C.’s housing market and building 114,000 affordable market rental, non-profit, supported social housing and owner-purchase housing through partnerships.
  • Budget 2018 launched the most significant investment in housing affordability in B.C. history — more than $7 billion over 10 years.
  • Through the new Building BC housing funds, the Province is investing approximately $13 million to help build new housing in Nanaimo:
    • Community Housing Fund: $12.1 million for three buildings with a total of 121 affordable rental homes
    • Women’s Transition Housing Fund: approximately $900,000 for a 10-bed women’s transition house
  • There are also more than 150 new affordable rental homes for Nanaimo seniors in development at 10 Buttertubs Dr. though the Affordable Rental Housing program, announced in July 2018.

Learn More:

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


Melanie Kilpatrick
Media Relations
Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
778 698-9176

Rajvir Rao
BC Housing
604 456-8917

Richard Harding
Director, Parks and Recreation
City of Nanaimo
250 755-7516

Dale Burgos
Executive Director - Communications, Privacy and Community Engagement
Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools
250 741-5273