Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Same goals, different approaches for Council members on the issue of affordable housing in Prince Rupert

A short overview by Mayor Brain on the latest developments with the city's Housing committees morphed into an exchange of ideas that offered up two differing approaches to the issue of finally making some progress on housing issues in the community.

During his short overview of the progress of the Housing committee, Mayor Lee Brain noted that members had recently taken a bus tour of the city, looking over the 208 lots owned by the City and assessing their potential use for affordable housing in the community.

With the Mayor observing for Council members that the next stage of that approach would be for the community and City to meet to try and determine what a project might look like in the community in the future.

On that theme, Councillor Thorkelson also shared a few thoughts on the topic, noting the need to
Councillor Thorkelson offered up
some insight on Housing on Monday
develop some community enthusiasm for the project and to attract some partners that might be interested in doing some building in the community.

As well she suggested that the City should approach both CMHC and BC Housing in order to get them to come to the city City and hold a workshop on how groups can get involved in creating housing. Noting that the cops for the city should be on what they believe should go where and to bring some ideas to the public for further discussion.

Councillor Cunningham wants to
see the process of providing
affordable housing in the community
move faster than it has to this point
Councillor Cunningham however had some other points to make, the main one noting that it has been an eight month process to this point to find some forward momentum and not much has happened, suggesting that Council should turn its attention to working with Non Profits, forgetting about BC Housing or CMHC.

Adding that he would like to see the city either donate land or lease some for a dollar to get a project off the ground.

In a lively exchange between the two councillors a range of issues related to CMHC, BC Housing and the changing nature of how the province is reacting to the issue of housing provided for a number of observations on the theme.

You can examined more of those from our city Council timeline here, however, the one key component of Councillor Cunningham's contribution on the night was the them of a substantial lack of progress when it comes to solving the current housing situation in the city as the city has defined it over the last year.

Or as Councillor Cunningham put it on Monday evening: " all I'm saying is the more people we get involved in this and the more models we can look at, the better chance we have of getting it done   ... we're just spinning its wheels and the tires are going to wear out and go flat pretty soon "

An overview of the discussion on housing can be found on our Council Timeline feature here.

You can review the full discussion on the topic from the City's Video Archive, it starts at the 27 minute mark.

For more items related to housing in the Northwest see our archive page here.

For further background on items from Prince Rupert City Council see our Council Discussion archive here.

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