Forum Equity Partners (“Forum”) and its consortium are happy to announce the construction phase of the Single-Room-Occupant (“SRO”) Renewal Initiative in downtown Vancouver is now complete. The successful Public Private Partnership (“P3”) between the British Columbia Housing Management Commission (“BC Housing”) and a Forum-led consortium, including important funding from P3 Canada, will provide safe and affordable social housing for some of the community’s most at-risk citizens.
All 13 buildings renovated are now operational and provide approximately 900 supportive housing units for some of the city’s most vulnerable residents. The SRO Renewal Initiative means BC Housing can continue to provide housing for individuals who are homeless or at risk, by ensuring safe, affordable, and energy efficient accommodations. Great care was taken during the renewal process to ensure the heritage character of the buildings was preserved as necessary upgrades and renovations were undertaken, with special care given to how the buildings will perform in the event of an earthquake. The project has been recognized with nine heritage awards to date, a National Award for Innovation and Excellence in 2013 and in 2014 it was awarded the Best Social Infrastructure Project of the Year.
“Forum is very proud to be partnered with BC Housing on this important and transformative community initiative. All 13 buildings in the SRO Renewal Initiative will improve the quality of life in Vancouver’s downtown east-side neighborhood for some of the most at-risk citizens. The properties now provide safe, affordable homes for those in need, while also restoring the heritage value and appearance of these century old buildings,” said Richard Abboud, Chief Executive Officer of Forum Equity Partners.
“The Public Private Partnerships model allowed for an innovative approach to developing a cost-effective housing project, which created significant value for the community, government agencies and companies involved. We consider the SRO Renewal Initiative to be an exemplary model of success for future housing P3 projects in Canada,” said Rupesh Amin, Managing Partner Infrastructure Development, Forum Equity Partners.
Forum is the lead equity sponsor, developer and asset manager in the SRO Renewal Initiative. Forum will continue to be the asset manager through the operations phase. Construction responsibilities were led by Ameresco Canada Inc., with Darwin Construction Ltd. as its primary sub‐contractor. Facility maintenance services will be provided by Black & McDonald Ltd. Project design was led by Merrick Architecture – Borowski Sakumoto Fligg Ltd. The Province of British Columbia invested $143.3 million into the project, which included $29.1 million from the Government of Canada through the P3 Canada Fund.
About Forum Equity Partners
Forum Equity Partners is a privately owned alternative investment management and development firm with a focus on assets in renewable energy, infrastructure and real estate. Headquartered in Toronto, Ontario with additional offices in San Francisco and Vancouver, and $1.3 billion in assets under management Forum is committed to achieving aggressive growth through its investment in rapidly emerging new markets and industries with innovative, new investment approaches and programs.