12:18 PM

Sixty-six affordable homes underway for Songhees Nation members

VICTORIA - Members of the Songhees Nation will soon have access to new affordable rental housing with construction underway on 66 below-market homes on Songhees Nation land.

"Songhees Nation proudly announces the new development at 1502 Admirals Rd. for Songhees, by Songhees. This project symbolizes our unwavering commitment to providing safe and secure housing for all our members," said Chief Ron Sam, Songhees Nation. "We are excited to declare that this initiative represents merely the first step in a comprehensive plan aimed at ensuring the well-being and prosperity of our people. The construction of a six-storey residential apartment reflects our dedication to on-reserve housing, a crucial step toward community empowerment. Together, we embark on a path prioritizing the fundamental right of every individual to a place they can call home."

The six-storey apartment building will feature a mix of studio, one- and two-bedroom homes, where residents will pay no more than 30% of their income on rent.

"We are taking action to help deliver much-needed housing for members of the Songhees community and I look forward to the positive impact these homes will have on the lives of Songhees residents, and their friends and families, here on their lands," said Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Housing. "This is the first new housing to be built on Songhees land in 17 years, and through our Homes for People plan, our government will continue to support culturally relevant, stable and affordable housing for Indigenous people."

This project is the result of a partnership between the Songhees Nation, the Province, through BC Housing, the federal government, through the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), and the Capital Regional District.

The homes will be operated by M'akola Housing Society and will be prioritized for Songhees Nation members. The building is expected to be completed in early 2025.

"I look forward to seeing the doors open on these new homes, so Indigenous families, elders and individuals can remain in their community with their family and friends," said Mitzi Dean, MLA for Esquimalt-Metchosin. "I would like to thank our many project partners, including Songhees Nation, M'akola Housing, the federal government and the Capital Region Housing Corporation, for coming together to make this housing project a reality."

This project is part of a $19-billion housing investment by the B.C. government. Since 2017, the Province has nearly 78,000 homes that have been completed or are underway, including approximately 5,500 homes in the Capital Regional District.

Funding provided for the project is as follows:

  • The Province, through BC Housing, is providing $10 million through the Federal Bilateral Canada Community Housing Initiative.
  • The federal government, through CMHC, is providing $9.9 million through the Rapid Housing Initiative (RHI) Cities Stream.
  • The Songhees Nation provided the land, which has a value of approximately $2.8 million.
  • The Capital Regional District applied to CMHC's RHI Cities Stream funding under the National Housing Strategy, and has partnered with BC Housing and Songhees Nation on the new rental housing development.
  • Aryze, the developer/builder of the project, is contributing $525,000 of in-kind design services.


Seamus O'Regan, federal minister of Labour and Seniors, on behalf of Sean Fraser, federal minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities -

"We need to build all kinds of housing to tackle the housing crisis. Homes that families can afford and meet their unique needs. We're working with local, regional and Songhees partners to make that a reality in Songhees Nation."

Zac de Vries, chair, Capital Region Housing Corporation -

"The Admirals Road project was made possible by a partnership between First Nations, local, provincial and federal governments - an emblematic demonstration of the kind of collaboration we need in order to make meaningful progress in addressing the housing crisis."

Luke Mari, principal, Aryze Developments -

"The project at 1502 Admirals Rd. represents a true, layered partnership, where the private sector has teamed up with four distinct governments - Songhees, regional, provincial and federal - to deliver much-needed housing for community members. This building is the epitome of rapid housing, from funding to construction in less than a year. On behalf of our team and our dedicated trade partners, we are honoured to be supporting Songhees Nation in this important, Indigenous-led housing solution."

Quick Facts:

  • To help build homes faster and support existing housing, the Province has committed approximately $1.8 billion over the next 10 years to build 3,500 homes on and off reserve through the Building BC: Indigenous Housing Fund, with 1,500 already open or underway.
  • Canada's National Housing Strategy (NHS) is a 10-year, $82 billion-plus plan that will give more Canadians a place to call home.
    • NHS is built on strong partnerships between the federal, provincial and territorial governments, and continuous engagement with others, including municipalities, Indigenous organizations, and the social and private housing sectors. This includes consultations with Canadians from all walks of life and people with lived experience of housing need.
    • All NHS investments delivered by the federal, provincial and territorial governments will respect the key principles of NHS that support partnerships, people and communities.

Learn More:

To learn about B.C.'s new Homes for People action plan, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2023HOUS0019-000436

To learn about the steps the Province is taking to tackle the housing crisis and deliver affordable homes for people in British Columbia, visit: https://strongerbc.gov.bc.ca/housing/

For the most requested Government of Canada housing information, visit: https://www.canada.ca/en/services/finance/manage/housing.html

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

For information about Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, visit: https://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/