CRD Board Approves Housing Funding for Vulnerable Citizens

May 13, 2015

Victoria, BC– The Capital Regional District (CRD) Board today approved the recommendation to award a Regional Housing Trust Fund (RHTF) grant totalling $425,000 to assist Latitude Living Ltd. in the construction of 34 new affordable rental housing units.

Located at 521 Comerford Street in Esquimalt, the housing project will provide shelter to individuals dealing with physical, mental health and addiction challenges. Nine of the units are specifically designed to be fully adaptable for those with physical disabilities. The total building cost of $6.5 million, or $185,000 per unit, is carried through private financing through a private lender, with Latitude Living Ltd. as the project proponent. A small commercial area will be converted onsite for Island Health office space. The project and all of its facilities will be under the control and management of Island Health.

“These new facilities will help provide a stable environment for these vulnerable individuals,” said CRD Board Chair Nils Jensen. “We are pleased to be part of a project that supports the expansion of mental health and homelessness initiatives in the region.”

The financial viability of the project is secured through a long-term lease agreement between Vancouver Island Health Authority (Island Health) and Latitude living Ltd. The $425,000 in grant funding further allows the lease agreement to be financially viable for Island Health resulting in improved affordable housing rents. The capital and operating budgets have been approved by Island Health and a 10 year operating lease has been secured. Construction of the new facility is nearing completion and occupancy is scheduled for end of June, 2015.

As of March 2015, the RHTF has entered its 10th year of operation. To date, approximately 700 units have been created through the provision of $8.7 million in grants creating over $135 million in additional community affordable housing assets. These assets contribute over $.5 million in additional municipal taxes annually.

For more information on the Regional Housing Trust Fund, visit our website.

The Housing Trust Fund is a key implementation initiative of the Regional Housing Affordability Strategy. The Fund was established by the CRD Board in 2005, in recognition that housing affordability is a regional priority and key issue in the Capital Region.

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For media inquiries, please contact:
Andy Orr, Senior Manager
CRD Corporate Communications
Tel: 250.360.3229
Cell: 250.216.5492