INDIVIDUALS, couples and families in Surrey can look forward to new options for affordable rental housing, with construction underway on 100 new homes in the community.
“The number 1 cause of homelessness in Surrey and across British Columbia is a shortage of affordable rental housing,” said David Eby, Attorney General and Minister Responsible for Housing, on Tuesday. “This announcement shows we’re moving in the right direction with much more to come. We will continue to invest in affordable housing so more people have a safe and secure place to call their own.”
Located at 13583 81 Avenue, Habitat @ 81st is a partnership between the Province, Habitat Housing Society, New Commons Development, the City of Surrey and Metro Vancouver.
The six-storey building will be operated by Habitat Housing Society. It will provide studio and one-, two- and three-bedroom homes for people and families with moderate and low incomes.
“It is always heart-warming to see the fruits of everyone’s labour coming together,” said Christine Mohr, CEO, Habitat Housing Society and Options Community Services. “We dreamed of an affordable housing solution for our clients and community, and it has now become a reality. This is what Options and Habitat do. We find the gaps. We work together, and we make things happen.”
The building will include space for community supports for children, youth, families, immigrants and people with mental health challenges. A rooftop deck and community room will also be available for residents.
People are expected to start moving into their homes in spring 2023.
Including these 100 new homes, approximately 1,480 homes are complete or underway in Surrey.
Rachna Singh, MLA for Surrey-Green Timbers, said: “Projects like this are critical to building strong, healthy communities. I’d like to thank Habitat Housing Society, New Commons Development, the City of Surrey and Metro Vancouver for working with the Province to get this project off the ground. These new homes will make life better for the people of Surrey.”
Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum said: “Affordable housing is at the centre of every healthy community, and that is why city council is focused on offering a diverse range of housing opportunities. This project is the latest example of how we are providing access to safe and secure place for individuals and families to call home. In offering affordable rental housing, we are giving everyone the opportunity to plant long-term roots in Surrey. As one of the fastest-growing cities in the country, I am pleased that Surrey has been identified for provincial funding for this very worthwhile housing initiative. The productive partnership we have forged with the Province is an example of what we can accomplish when we work together.”
Sav Dhaliwal, Chair, board of directors, Metro Vancouver, said: “As one of the largest affordable housing providers in the province, Metro Vancouver is pleased to have contributed to the development of these 100 new apartments in Surrey by waiving over $350,000 in liquid waste development cost charges. Between 2019 and 2020, we waived approximately $2.6 million in fees to support the development of over 1,360 affordable rental units, and we will continue to work to expand the region’s supply of affordable housing through partnership and co-investment.”
Nadia Hill, Senior Development Manager, New Commons Development, said: “Understanding all that Habitat Housing Society and Options Community Services provide to this community, it has been a pleasure working with them to bring this exciting project together. With the funding help of BC Housing, this much-needed housing and office/support space will be a valuable asset in the community.”
* The Province is providing nearly $20 million in capital funding for the project:
– $14 million from the Affordable Rental Housing Program; and
– $5.8 million from the Building BC: Community Housing Fund.
* The Province is providing approximately $16 million in construction financing.
* Habitat Housing Society is providing the land for the project and $2.3 million.
* The City of Surrey has waived $269,094 in development fees.
* Metro Vancouver has waived $353,000 in development fees.
A map showing the location of all announced provincially funded housing projects in B.C. is available online: https://www.bchousing.org/