New affordable rental housing coming to Port Alberni


August 26, 2020

PORT ALBERNI – Construction is set to start on nearly 50 new, affordable rental homes for families and seniors in Port Alberni, as a result of a partnership between the Province and the Alberni Low Energy Housing Society (ALEHS).

“I am so excited to see this project moving forward as we continue to make investments in the affordable housing people in our community need,” said Scott Fraser, MLA for Mid Island-Pacific Rim. “The mix of subsidized and affordable rentals will benefit a wide range of people in our community, while the passive design will help ensure heating and utility costs also remain affordable for residents. Thank you to our partners, the Alberni Low Energy Housing Society, for their hard work and dedication on this project.”

Located at 4450 Maitland St., the project will be a four-storey, 46-unit apartment building for families and seniors, ranging from those on income assistance to those with incomes up to 
$113,040. The development will provide one-, two- and three-bedroom homes. Monthly rents will be a mix of subsidized and affordable market rents.

ALEHS will own and operate the building. The society is focused on developing low-energy housing and the building will aim to meet the energy efficiency requirements necessary to achieve a passive house certification. Passive house buildings consume up to 90% less heating and cooling energy than conventional buildings, dramatically reducing operating costs and aligning with long-term goals under the CleanBC Plan.

“The board of the Alberni Low Energy Housing Society is extremely pleased to provide highly energy efficient and superior quality housing for people with financial challenges,” said Mike Ruttan, board chair, Alberni Low Energy Housing Society. “This project will be for the whole range of demographics within our city: seniors, youth, children and families. It’s one that we believe people will be proud to live in and call home. We aim to create a sense of community where everyone works to create a sense of belonging and co-operation. This project would not have been possible without the support of BC Housing and its belief in our vision.”

Construction is expected to start in September and the homes are expected to open in fall 2021.

Delivering affordable housing is a shared priority between government and the BC Green Party caucus and is part of the Confidence and Supply Agreement.

Learn More:

A map showing the location of all announced provincially funded housing projects in B.C. is available online: https://www.bchousing.org/homes-for-BC

For more information on how BC Housing is supporting British Columbians during the COVID-19 outbreak, visit: https://www.bchousing.org/COVID-19

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

Two backgrounders follow.

Contacts:

Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
Media Relations
778 584-1255

BC Housing
media@bchousing.org

 

 

BACKGROUNDER

Facts about Maitland Street Project

  • The project's total capital budget is approximately $15.8 million.
    • The Province provided $4.6 million to the project through the Building BC: Community Housing Fund and will provide up to $200,000 in annual operating funding.
    • The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation provided $2 million through the Federal Bilateral Canada Community Housing Initiative Grant and $1.5 million through the National Housing Strategy Co-Investment Fund.
    • The City of Port Alberni contributed $112,000 in municipal waivers.
    • ALEHS provided the land, valued at $350,000.
  • Rents are projected to range from $375 to $1,250 per month:
    • nine units for people with very low incomes (mostly residents on income assistance): $375 to $660 per month
    • 22 rent geared-to-income units for people with low to moderate incomes ($33,000 to $48,500): approximately $532 to $761 per month
    • 15 affordable market units for people with moderate incomes ($74,150 to $113,040): approximately $840 to $1,250 per month

Contacts:

Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing Media Relations
778 584-1255

BC Housing
media@bchousing.org

BACKGROUNDER

Province building new homes to meet full spectrum of housing needs

The B.C. government is working in partnership with non-profits, municipalities, First Nations, Indigenous housing organizations and the private sector 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 23,000 new homes are completed, under construction or in the approvals process for a range of people who 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. As of Dec. 31, 2019, this includes:

Housing for people with middle incomes

The average annual household income qualifying for homes underway is under $99,000 per year:

  • HousingHub: 2,802 homes

Housing for people with low to moderate incomes

This includes people residing in social housing (household incomes less than $65,000) as well as those living in affordable market rentals (households with annual incomes up to $74,000) – 9,837 homes:

Affordable market:

  • Building BC: Community Housing Fund (30% of units in each project): 1,565 rental homes for people with low to moderate incomes
  • Affordable Rental Housing Program: 1,615 homes for people with low to moderate incomes
  • Deepening Affordability Fund: 1,976 homes for people with low to moderate incomes
  • Regional Housing First Program: 907 homes for people with low to moderate incomes

Social housing or subsidized rents:

  • Building BC: Community Housing Fund (50% of units in each project): 2,609 rental homes for people with low incomes
  • Building BC: Indigenous Housing Fund: 1,165 homes for Indigenous peoples, on- and off- reserve

Housing for people with very low incomes

Rental housing for people experiencing or at-risk of homelessness, or for people with very low incomes (includes supportive housing and shelter-rate housing) – 4,795 homes:

  • Rapid Response to Homelessness: 2,012 homes with 24/7 support
  • Building BC: Supportive Housing Fund: 1,060 homes with 24/7 support
  • Building BC: Women’s Transition Housing Fund: 679 spaces of transition, second-stage and affordable rental housing for women and children leaving violence
  • Building BC: Community Housing Fund (20% of units in each project): 1,044 homes

Housing for students – 5,584 homes:

  • BC Student Housing Loan Program: 2,699 on-campus student housing units are under construction, in development or in the approvals process
  • 2,885 student housing units are also completed, under construction or in development through partnerships with post-secondary institutions

Total: 23,018 homes

Media Contacts:

Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
778 584-2433

BC Housing
media@bchousing.org