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More than 500 homes, shelter spaces coming to Kamloops

June 24, 2024 at 12:39 pm  BC, News, Politics, Provincial

People living in Kamloops will have more housing options that meet their needs, as multiple housing and shelter projects are planned throughout the city.

“More than 500 new homes and shelter spaces mark the biggest investment in housing to date in Kamloops,” said Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Housing. “Through our Homes for People action plan, homes for people with middle and low-to-moderate incomes, and for people at risk of, or experiencing, homelessness are being delivered in Kamloops so people have a safe and affordable place to live.”

A BC Builds site, which is owned by the Ministry of Citizens’ Services, has been zoned to support approximately 200 homes for families and individuals with middle incomes in the community. Proposals are being sought for a residential developer through the BC Builds Housing Development Opportunities website. This is the second BC Builds site identified in Kamloops. The first is at 377 Tranquille Ave., the site of a six-storey purpose-built rental building.

“We want everyone to have the opportunity to thrive and succeed, and that is why we are working together to find innovative housing solutions that meet a variety of needs,” said George Chow, Minister of Citizens’ Services. “My ministry is pleased to be working in partnership across government on initiatives like this one, so British Columbians feel supported with more affordable housing options.”

In addition to the BC Builds site, two housing projects, which were selected through the recently announced intake of the Community Housing Fund, will provide people with affordable housing. The homes, which are located at 604 Lorne St., known as Marquee, and 210 Oak Rd., will provide approximately 80 individuals, families, seniors and people living with disabilities with affordable rental rates for those with low or moderate incomes.

Recognizing the need for indoor housing for people experiencing homelessness, two modular buildings will be installed at 769-845 Mission Flats Rd. and will include 98 units of supportive housing. These units will replace the 54 units of modular housing located at 805 Mission Flats Rd. Tenants living in those units will be given first right of refusal.

“This transformational announcement for our community has been made possible through advocacy and partnership,” said Katie Neustaeter, deputy mayor of Kamloops. “Unified in purpose, our city and the Province are forging pathways of progress; proving that together, we build futures filled with vision, warmth and a safe place to call home.”

In addition, a 40-bed, year-round shelter mainly for seniors and older adults experiencing homelessness is being developed at 1055 Glenfair Dr. The Province is also working with community partners to open a 22-bed, second-stage transition house in the community for women and children leaving violence.

The Province and BC Housing are working in partnership with the City of Kamloops to bring the Homeless Encampment Action Response Team and Homeless Encampment Action Temporary Housing (HEARTH) programs to the community. While work to confirm appropriate HEARTH sites is ongoing, approximately 100 units are planned for Kamloops and will be announced in the coming months.

These projects are part of a $19-billion housing investment by the B.C. government. Since 2017, the Province has nearly 80,000 homes that have been delivered or are underway, including more than 1,800 homes in Kamloops.

Quotes:

Alfred Achoba, executive director, Canadian Mental Health Association–Kamloops Branch –

“Marquee is a landmark project that blends affordability with support services to create a thriving, inclusive community. The project reflects our commitment to provide more than just housing, but a platform for community engagement and personal growth. Through Marquee, we are setting new standards for how housing can improve mental-health supports and social integration.”

Lindsay Lord, CEO, Connective Support Society Kamloops –

“Connective has been operating affordable housing safely and successfully since 1999 and currently owns and operates over 300 units of housing within the community of Kamloops. We are pleased to work alongside BC Housing and the City of Kamloops to build much-needed affordable housing in our community.”

Allison Mclauchlan, executive director, Kamloops and District Elizabeth Fry Society –

“Kamloops Elizabeth Fry Society has been providing affordable housing since incorporation in 1984 and currently offers 116 units throughout the community. Domestic abuse takes the lives of women and children and the need to provided safe affordable housing is essential for our community. We are very excited to be working with BC Housing on this much needed project.”

Learn More:

To learn more about the Community Housing Fund, visit:
https://www.bchousing.org/projects-partners-BC-CHF

To learn more about BC Builds housing development opportunities, visit: 
https://www.bcbuildshomes.ca/developers/

To learn more about the Belonging in BC plan, visit:
https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/BelongingStrategy.pdf

To learn more about government’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 British Columbians, visit:
https://strongerbc.gov.bc.ca/housing/

A backgrounder follows.

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