Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Rich Coleman's Affordable Housing tour takes him to Penticton

Deputy Premier and Housing Minister
Rich Coleman celebrates a new
affordable housing proposal
with Penticton 's Mayor and MLA

(from the BC Gov't website)
While Prince Rupert's City Council continues on with its discussions related to affordable housing in the community, around the province it seems that some places are actually getting closer to walls, a floor and a roof when it comes to providing for housing for those in need.

Last week we outlined a new housing project in Victoria, which offers an interesting approach to the housing situation in that community.

That it would seem was not what would be called a one off, as Monday delivered word of another housing initiative, this one in a community of somewhat similar size to Prince Rupert and from where perhaps a few ideas might be taken.

Yesterday, Housing Minister Rich Coleman heralded yet one more project to take note of, this one in Penticton, where two buildings holding 70 units for affordable housing will be constructed on City owned lots in the South Okanagan community.

The province will be providing the financing for the projects, with a Request for Proposals for a non-profit housing society to be issued this month, the provincial money will begin to flow once the qualified societies have been selected.

As part of the City of Penticton's commitment, in addition to providing the city owned property to be used as the site for the housing, the South Okanagan city will also be waving a development cost charge.

As well, the proposed housing solution will be able to take advantage of a five year tax free arrangement, a program  that Penticton has in place  for its designated economic investment zone.

“Part of building a healthy community is making sure that people have access to secure and affordable rental housing. Through this partnership with the city, more families in Penticton will have a safe place to call home. I look forward to seeing construction begin and we will continue to work with our partners to increase the supply of affordable homes in the area.” -- BC Liberal Cabinet Minister Rich Coleman, wearing his Housing ministry hat, outlining some background on a new affordable housing initiative for the Penticton area.

You can review more of the Penticton plans here.

A further glimpse of what the plan for the South Okanagan looks like can be found below

Affordable housing project planned for Penticton
Penticton tackles affordable housing issue (video)
70 more affordable homes
Penticton champions new affordable housing project, but at what cost?

For Prince Rupert City Council which is still struggling to find its way on the issue of housing in the community, the two blue prints from the last week might offer up some kind of a pathway to solving their housing dilemmas.

There appears to be progress being made on housing issues in many communities in the province. Perhaps seeking out the details from those that are finding success on the topic, might help Prince Rupert Council as it looks towards moving forward with a made in Prince Rupert solution to housing concerns in the future.

To follow the housing issue of the last year on the North Coast see our archive page here.

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