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Delta affordable rental housing projects move closer to approval

Both applications got a favourable vote from council but must meet conditions before final approval
Evergreen Lane project
The Affordable Housing Societies have been working to develop a plan for the redevelopment of its properties on Evergreen Lane. Funding for that project has been secured through BC Housing’s Community Housing Fund. The KinVillage project is also receiving financial support from BC Housing.

Delta council held a public hearing Thursday for a pair of proposed development projects for affordable rentals.

The first application to be heard is part of a long-term expansion of the KinVillage seniors housing complex in Tsawwassen.

It’s a 152-unit, four-to six-storey seniors’ affordable rental apartment building which includes space for a day program for older adults.

Located on 54A Street, the rental building includes three rent classifications: rent-geared-to-income units (50 percent of units), affordable market rentals (30 percent of units) and deep subsidy rentals (20 percent of units) with indoor amenity spaces, common balcony spaces and laundry rooms on each floor.

The project’s site currently contains KinVillage’s North Court building which is to be demolished when the new facility is completed.

The proponent told council that an analysis determined the development would have no significant impact on traffic and the available parking would meet the future demand of facility residents and visitors.

However, all the speakers at the hearing expressed concern about street parking, traffic after the development is built, as well as construction parking and traffic.

Council agreed there has to be an approved construction traffic and parking management plan to address neighbourhood concerns as a condition of final approval.

As far as parking after the project is constructed, staff said a number of factors are behind the request for a variance to relax the onsite parking including costs for the low-income housing development.

Among the other questions raised by council was the amount of indoor amenity space and why there isn’t more.

The applicant noted that, overall, the development would exceed BC Housing’s maximums per unit when outdoor space is factored.

Other questions raised included the layout of rooms and why bathrooms were not designed to be closer to the beds. Council agreed that the design would need to change before final approval.

Councillors also wanted an assurance that air conditioners would be included in units, something they agreed must also be a condition before a building permit is issued.  

Following the public hearing, council voted in favour of granting third reading.

Coun. Lois Jackson was the lone councillor to vote in opposition, saying she preferred seeing more details and information coming back on the questions raised.

The other project is a proposal for a two-phase, 198-unit non-market housing development for seniors, families and inclusive housing for persons with intellectual disabilities at 4603, 4625 and 4649 Evergreen Lane in Ladner.

The proposed development by Affordable Housing Societies would have rents set at levels affordable for households with low, moderate and middle incomes.

That application was also granted third reading.

Council was told the development won’t solve the affordable housing crises on its own, but will make a difference for the residents who will call it home.

The development will also include 10 units for those with intellectual abilities.

Noting they are advocating for supportive, affordable and inclusive housing for those with intellectual disabilities, Delta Housing Be Mine Society president Shirley-Ann Reid said there about 425 Deltans with intellectual disabilities who will need a new home within five years, since a majority of those are currently living with aging parents.

Others with children with intellectual disabilities also spoke in favour.

Speaking on behalf of the Delta Chamber of Commerce, Lydia Elder said the project is an example of a complete community housing planning.

Almost all the other speakers also spoke in favour, describing the need for more affordable housing in Ladner.

Just one conveyed concerns including parking.

Council agreed air conditioning would also be a requirement as a condition of final approval.