The empty lot which the provincial government plans to build a supportive housing development on at Skaha Lake Road. (Jesse Day - Western News)

Province announces Skaha supportive housing project

The project will provide 50 units for the homeless and people at risk of being homeless

Penticton will be getting a new affordable housing project on Skaha Lake Road.

The new project would provide up to 54 residential units of supportive housing for those who are homeless or are at risk of homelessness.

The project is one of 50 supportive housing projects announced by BC Housing on Dec. 15.

“These new homes will provide the fresh start people need along with around-the-clock supports to help them achieve their goals – whether that’s reconnecting with family, tackling health or mental health challenges, or finding employment,” said David Eby, the B.C. Attorney General and Minister Responsible for Housing. “Our government is working to ensure all British Columbians have a safe place to call home.”

READ MORE: City allows five storeys for affordable housing project

The planned four-storey development will be located at 3240 Skaha Lake Road, and will have on-site staff present 24/7 to provide meals, training, and support services according to the release from the B.C. government.

An operator for the property has not yet been confirmed, but the project is planned to be modelled after the Burdock House project operated by ASK Wellness Society.

BC Housing will conduct two virtual, small-group community dialogue sessions to provide people with information about the development plans and an opportunity for conversation about how to integrate the new housing into the community.

BC Housing will also set up a community advisory committee closer to completion to support integration once the site is operating.

The supportive housing units are the first phase of the site’s development. The rest of the site will be kept available for future affordable housing projects for people in Penticton, including seniors, singles, families and/or people with a disability.

Construction is expected to begin in spring 2021 and anticipated to be completed in summer 2022.

READ MORE: Penticton supports ASK Wellness Society affordable housing project

“This is an important investment for people in the Okanagan,” said Roly Russell, MLA for Boundary-Similkameen. “We know how critical housing is to help so many in our rural communities that are struggling. This purchase of land is an important first step to ensuring residents here have safe and affordable housing and the supports they need to succeed.”

The City of Penticton is awaiting BC Housing plans and proposals for the project.

ASK Wellness Society approached the city and council for their support on Nov. 17 to aquire land for an affordable housing project that would provide 83 units for seniors and families. According to the city, no land has been aquired yet for that project.

On Dec. 7, council approved in a 3-2 vote to allow five-storeys for a proposed affordable housing project at 603 Main Street by the M’akola Housing Society.

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