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SQUAMISH, BC, March 2, 2021 /CNW/ - Every Canadian deserves a safe and affordable place to call home.
Today, The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), Patrick Weiler, Member of Parliament for West Vancouver – Sunshine Coast – Sea to Sky Country, and Karen Elliott, Mayor of the District of Squamish, announced a $40.55 million commitment by the Government of Canada, $1.6 million of which will be forgivable as part of the loan agreement.
The B.C. government is providing $9.5 million in funding for the project, and the District of Squamish is contributing an additional $4.1 million in funding. This partnership will provide a 232-unit independent living housing complex for seniors in Squamish.
Westwinds will become an affordable seniors housing complex, developed by Squamish Senior Citizens Home Society in partnership with Polygon Homes. The Society has owned and operated affordable seniors housing in Squamish since 1970.
Westwinds will replace their existing complex and expand capacity by over 300%. The new five-storey multi-residential building will provide 232 one-bedroom units for seniors, and will feature support services from other agencies like health care, counselling, a food bank, fitness classes, social functions, and seminars. Westwinds is scheduled to open its doors in late 2021.
Westwinds is receiving financial support through the National Co-Investment Fund, a flagship initiative of the National Housing Strategy (NHS), as well as from BC Housing and the District of Squamish.
"Canada's seniors have shaped this country and contribute to our communities every day. Now more than ever, we need to ensure they have access to a safe and affordable place to call home. Westwinds is testament to what can be achieved when all levels of government come together with this shared purpose, and I look forward to seeing the positive impact this project will have on the community in Squamish." – The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development and Minister responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
"Our region knows the impacts of the housing crisis all too well, and in Squamish, it is especially acute for young families and seniors alike. Addressing this crisis requires all orders of government and stakeholders to play a key role. Today's announcement shows what is possible when there is a commitment among these actors to work together. The result is the Westwinds project that will provide 232 units of safe, affordable homes for seniors, which will have a positive impact on the entire community." – Patrick Weiler, Member of Parliament for West Vancouver – Sunshine Coast – Sea to Sky Country
"This is a major project that will provide secure and truly affordable housing for hundreds of seniors in Squamish. When the need has been so great for so long, I'm more than a little moved to know that this project is moving ahead as a result of this partnership between governments." – Bowinn Ma, MLA for North Vancouver-Lonsdale
"The District of Squamish has helped to pave the way for this affordable housing project with contributions of $4.1 million in the form of foregone revenue from waived fees and Community Amenity Contributions from the developer, as well as approval of the project through rezoning. This is a vital step forward by the Squamish Senior Citizens Home Society to create homes for the seniors of Squamish to be able to age in place. As Squamish works to address housing affordability across the housing continuum, we thank all partners for their collaborative efforts to bring this to reality." – Mayor Karen Elliott, District of Squamish
"We are grateful that so many levels of Government have reached out to assist us with Westwinds. Our need for affordable housing is so immense here in the Sea to Sky Corridor and 232 units is an incredible addition. We would like to extend our thanks to CMHC, BC Housing and the District of Squamish for their support. And we can't say enough about the generosity of our partner Polygon Homes." – Laura Modray, Executive Director, Squamish Senior Citizens Home Society
"We are thrilled to be partnering with the Squamish Senior Citizens Home Society, CMHC, BC Housing, and the District of Squamish in the building of Westwinds. The collaboration of all parties working together to create something special for future generations in Squamish means so much to everyone on the Polygon Team." – Neil Chrystal President and CEO Polygon Homes
The Government of Canada acknowledges this development is located on the traditional territory of Coast Salish and Skwxwú7mesh-ulh Temíx̱w (Squamish) peoples.
Provincial investments since 2017 are also supporting the construction of 181 additional affordable rental homes in Squamish.
With a budget of $13.2 billion, the NHCF gives priority to projects that help people who need it most, including women and children fleeing family violence, seniors, Indigenous people, people with disabilities, those with mental health or addiction issues, veterans and young adults.
Through the NHCF, the Government of Canada will work with partners to build up to 60,000 new affordable homes and repair up to 240,000 existing affordable and community homes.
Under the NHCF, investments are also planned to create or repair at least 4,000 shelter spaces for victims of family violence, as well as create at least 7,000 new affordable housing units for seniors and 2,400 new affordable housing units for people with developmental disabilities.
Canada's National Housing Strategy (NHS) is a 10-year, $70+ billion plan that will give more Canadians a place to call home—this includes more than $13 billion committed through the 2020 Fall Economic Statement.
As Canada's authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers unbiased housing research and advice to all levels of Canadian government, consumers and the housing industry. CMHC's aim is that by 2030, everyone in Canada has a home they can afford and that meets their needs. For more information, please visit cmhc.ca or follow us on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.
To find out more about the National Housing Strategy, please visit www.placetocallhome.ca.
SOURCE Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
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