City of Burnaby uses innovative approach to help Burnaby Association for  Community Inclusion build for the future

Derek Corrigan

BURNABY Council has approved allocating funds from the City’s Community Benefit Bonus Housing Fund to help the Burnaby Association for Community Inclusion (BACI) replace its aging facilities and build new non-market housing.

The agreement-in-principle, which is subject to rezoning and to BACI securing capital funding from BC Housing, will allow the Association to redevelop a portion of the city-owned site at 3755 Banff Avenue and enter into a long-term lease, securing the site well into the future.

“This is precisely the kind of project we envisioned supporting when council established the Community Benefit Bonus Policy in 1997,” said Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan. “I’m proud that the City has been able to work with BACI and found a way to help them continue to expand the valuable services they provide in our community.”

BACI is a Burnaby-based, non-profit organization that provides innovative services to over 1,000 children, youth and adults with developmental disabilities and their families in Metro Vancouver. It currently operates nine units of affordable rental housing and a 36-space child care centre on the site, which it has leased from the city since 1973.

BACI is proposing to replace the existing child care building with a mixed-use facility comprised of a new 36-space child care centre on the ground floor and nine non-market housing units above. A new residential building, consisting of six non-market rental units, is also proposed at the southeast corner of the property. The existing nine-unit residential building on site, Filby Court, will remain in place.

If BACI is successful in completing the rezoning and obtaining capital funding, the city will renew the lease and, through the Community Benefit Bonus Housing Fund, provide $1.6 million toward subsidizing land and servicing costs.

“I want to recognize staff for their determination in coming up with a plan that helps BACI continue their excellent work while at the same time respecting the need for the City to be vigilant in managing these funds,” said Corrigan. “The Community Benefit Bonus Policy is doing exactly what it is intended to do – helping build a livable and inclusive community without burdening the taxpayer.”

The Community Benefit Bonus Policy enables the city to provide community benefits by permitting additional residential densities within Burnaby’s town centres. The density bonusing approach provides the City with important community benefits, such as parks and public gathering places, civic facilities, non-profit office spaces, affordable housing, cultural facilities, child care centres, and public realm and environmental enhancements. The Community Benefit Bonus Policy is one of the mechanisms available to the city to help finance and achieve community benefits that maintain and increase quality of life for Burnaby citizens.