Temporary modular housing approved for Vancouver’s 3598 Copley Street

THE Director of Planning for the City of Vancouver on Wednesday announced the approval of a development permit to build 58 new temporary modular homes at 3598 Copley Street (formerly 2303-2355 Vanness Avenue).

The approval of the new building follows the completion of more than 600 temporary modular homes, all funded by the Province, in locations across Vancouver earlier this year which have provided immediate relief for hundreds of people who now have a safe, warm place to call home. 

BC Housing has partnered with Community Builders Group (CBG) as the non-profit housing operator for this new location. CBG will provide support services to the tenants 24/7, including life skills training, volunteer work, employment preparation and connections to community-based programs. Once the building opens there will be a 24/7 phone line available to the community to call with any building-related questions or concerns. 

A condition of the development permit includes establishing a Community Advisory Committee, consisting of members of the public and program partners, representing community interests and providing an ongoing forum for information sharing and ongoing dialogue.

As part of the development permit process, the City hosted two community information sessions with approximately 115 people in attendance. City staff also held in-person meetings with key stakeholders in the neighbourhood.

Feedback on the new building, both in support and opposition, was received through 42 comment cards and 79 emails and calls. In response, the City and BC Housing will:

·         Enhance lighting on the outside of the building

·         Preserve as many trees as possible on the site

·         Include landscape along the front of the building to provide screening to bolster privacy

Construction is anticipated to begin in November with the building is expected to open in the first quarter of 2020. BC Housing has contracted Horizon North to construct the temporary modular housing. Each new home will be 320 square feet. The homes will have a kitchenette, bathroom, living / sleeping area, and individual heating, allowing the residents autonomy in their living spaces. Six homes will be wheelchair accessible. The building will also include a large indoor amenity space with a commercial kitchen that will provide a dining space for residents to gather. Two meals will be provided to the residents each day. There will be common laundry facilities, an administration office, and meeting rooms for the staff and residents to use to provide services.

The Community Liaison, a City representative, is available to answer ongoing questions on the project during construction until the building is complete and is available at 604-829-9321.

The Government of B.C. is funding the construction of the new supportive housing and providing operational funding. In just over two years, the Province has opened more than 2,000 supportive homes, including more than 720 in Vancouver, as part of the 4,700 that will be completed over 10 years.

Capital costs for the new building at 3598 Copley Street will also be supplemented with funding from the Government of Canada via the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

To learn more about temporary modular housing, visit vancouver.ca/temporarymodularhousing