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B.C. begins new round of affordable housing projects

B.C. begins new round of affordable housing projects

VANCOUVER — Government officials in B.C. are asking non-profit and Indigenous housing societies, First Nations, housing co-operatives and municipalities to submit ideas for new affordable housing projects.

The projects will be considered for the second intake of the Building BC: Community Housing Fund.

The fund was announced in 2018 as part of B.C.’s 10-year, $7-billion housing plan. The fund has set aside $1.9 billion to build more than 14,000 mixed-income rental homes for middle- and low-income families and individuals. During the past two years, more than 5,200 homes have been completed, are under construction or in development through this program in more than 40 communities.

The RFP is being done through BC Housing and is expected to result in 3,000 new affordable homes.

“During these extraordinary times, it is clearer than ever that safe, secure and affordable housing is critical for all British Columbians,” said Selina Robinson, minister of municipal affairs and housing, in a press release. “These new projects will deliver urgently needed rental homes for people, while also creating good jobs and supporting B.C.’s economic recovery.”

The fund prioritizes  housing projects where 20 per cent of the units are for households with very low incomes (including those on income assistance), 50 per cent of the units are for households with incomes up to $64,000 and 30 per cent of the units are for households with incomes up to approximately $74,000.

Proposals will start being accepted May 27 and the RFP will remain open until mid-January 2021. Officials encouraged organizations to apply early as an initial round of projects will be approved in fall 2020.

Funding is available to groups that applied for the first round of funding though the Community Housing Fund and to those who have applied for other Building BC funds. All Building BC funding programs are open to First Nations.

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