A rendering of the newly approved affordable housing project that will be constructed on city property behind BC Ambulance Services. (Revelstoke Community Housing Society)

A rendering of the newly approved affordable housing project that will be constructed on city property behind BC Ambulance Services. (Revelstoke Community Housing Society)

Affordable housing society frustrated with City of Revelstoke delays

They had hoped affordable apartment project would be completed this fall

  • Nov. 5, 2020 12:00 a.m.

Residents were supposed to be moving into Revelstoke’s newest affordable housing complex by the end of October.

Instead, the project hasn’t yet broken ground.

Delays from city has caused the project to be put out to tender for a second time, in December.

“We are frustrated,” said Glen O’Reilly, chair of the Revelstoke Housing Society.

The board estimates the project, which is funded through the Columbia Basin Trust as well as BC Housing, has cost an extra $200,000 so far due to delays that are out of the society’s hands.

“We are still on board to get this building complete,” O’Reilly said.

Revelstoke city council approved the development permit for the project in December 2019.

The society was hoping to break ground in March 2019 and then in April 2020 and again in August of this year, but couldn’t begin without a lease agreement from the city, which has yet to be finalized.

Both BC Housing and the city adopted policy and bylaw amendments to allow for small unit sizes proposed in the project. The building features a three-story building with 24 one-bedroom apartments that are around 450 square-feet.

READ MORE: Revelstoke City Council to remove minimum home sizes

They will be rented at affordable rates.

The site, which is located behind BC Ambulance Services at the intersection of Oscar and Edward streets, will feature outdoor space, workshops, storage space and laundry facilities. The building also features one adaptable unit and one accessible unit, both of which are slightly larger.

O’Reilly said a frustrating aspect of the ongoing delays is that addressing housing needs was identified by city council as one of their priorities for their term.

In 2018, a housing needs assessment completed by a contractor on behalf of the city identified a need for all types of housing in the Revelstoke except single-family detached.

READ MORE: A strong need for all forms of housing in Revelstoke, except for single-family detached

Marianne Wade, director of development services for the city, said that the subdivision application was submitted to the land title office and the lot for the project was created. However, as of their meeting on Nov. 4, the housing society was not notified of this progress.


 

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