Construction is underway on new rental housing in Esquimalt that will deliver nearly 140 homes for low- and middle-income people in the community.
Today, the Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion, Mitzi Dean, Member of the Legislative Assembly for Esquimalt – Metchosin, Mayor Barb Desjardins, Township of Esquimalt and Virginia Holden, Executive Director at Greater Victoria Housing Society announced nearly $22 million in funding for this project.
The Government of Canada is contributing $6.4 million to the project through the National Housing Co-Investment Fund (NHCF), while the province, through BC Housing, is providing a grant of approximately $14.5 million through the Building BC: Community Housing Fund and will provide ongoing annual operating funding. In addition, Lapis Homes donated $60,000 and Vancity Savings Credit Union provided $19,500 in seed funding and a predevelopment seed loan of $350,000.
Located at 874 Fleming St., the new 137-unit six-storey wood frame building will have a mix of unit sizes, including five three-bedroom and six four-bedroom units to accommodate families. The development also includes seven studio units that are fully wheelchair accessible. All tenants who occupied the original building were relocated to other housing in the community with financial assistance and will have the right of first refusal to rent in the new building.
“Everyone deserves a safe place to call home. Our government is dedicated to helping those in need, which is why we are proud to invest in the redevelopment of this apartment complex in Esquimalt. With nearly 140 units to support families, this project will play a vital role in providing housing options for those in need in the community. This is the National Housing Strategy at work.”
“British Columbians need more affordable and quality housing, and our government is working with partners across our Province to make housing accessible to everyone. I am pleased to see that people of Esquimalt will benefit from this project that brings 137 new affordable homes, from studio to four-bedroom apartments, that will better meet the needs of our community”
“We’re looking forward to welcoming a range of residents — from families to elders to those starting out — to our township and appreciate the support from funders who believe in this project. Finding 3 and especially 4-bedroom units is harder and harder these days. We are so thrilled to offer homes for families of different sizes. This development is close to schools, the Lions Little League Park, our community garden, the Gorge Waterway, and local businesses. The new Esquimalt Lions Lodge will provide much-needed housing for our growing community.”
“Greater Victoria Housing Society is excited to be replacing a building at the end of its life with new additional affordable rental homes in the Township of Esquimalt for families, seniors and persons with diverse abilities. The Society has worked with the Township, funding partners, previous tenants, and neighbours since 2016 to bring this beautiful building to life offering units at very low to market rents to address growing community need. The planned building will also include sustainability and resiliency features that will in ensure the comfort and security of the tenants for many decades.”
- Rent for 68 of the homes will be geared to income, where rent is set at 30% of the tenant’s gross income. There will also be 28 deeply affordable units with rents starting at $375 for a studio and $715 for a four-bedroom. Tenants are expected to start moving into their new homes in early summer 2024.
- This project is part of the nearly 34,000 new homes that are complete or underway for people in B.C. through provincial government investments made since 2017.
- The Community Housing Fund is part of the Province’s 10-year, $7-billion housing plan.
- The fund is an investment of $1.9 billion to build more than 14,000 affordable rental homes over 10 years for moderate- and low-income families and individuals.
- More than 8,800 of these homes are already open, under construction or in development across the province.
- The National Housing Co-Investment Fund (NHCF) is a program under the National Housing Strategy (NHS) that gives priority to projects that help people who need it most, including women and children fleeing family violence, seniors, Indigenous peoples, people living with disabilities, those with mental health or addiction issues, veterans, and young adults.
- With a budget of $13.2 billion, the NHCF plans to:
- Create up to 60,000 new homes
- Repair up to 240,000 homes
- Create or repair at least 4,000 shelter spaces for victims of family violence
- Create at least 7,000 new homes for seniors
- Create at least 2,400 new homes for people with developmental disabilities
- Budget 2022 proposes to advance $2.9 billion in funding under the NHCF to accelerate the creation of up to 4,300 new units and the repair of up to 17,800 units.
- The Government of Canada’s National Housing Strategy (NHS) is an ambitious, 10-year plan that will invest over $72 billion to give more Canadians a place to call home.
As Canada's authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers unbiased housing research and advice to all levels of Canadian government, consumers and the housing industry. CMHC’s aim is that by 2030, everyone in Canada has a home they can afford and that meets their needs. For more information, please visit cmhc.ca or follow us on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.
To find out more about the National Housing Strategy, visit: www.placetocallhome.ca.
A map showing the location of all announced provincially-funded housing projects in B.C. is available online at: https://www.bchousing.org/homes-for-BC.
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/.
For information on this release:
Office of the Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
Office of the Attorney General and Ministry Responsible for Housing (BC)
Greater Victoria Housing Society