The Project

We are developing a non-profit apartment building with 30 one bedroom units for independent Seniors. Most of the units will be aimed at those requiring affordable housing; BC Housing defines "affordable" as 10 to 15 percent below market rents. For financial sustainability, a minority of the units will be at market rates. The site is at the corner of Reid St. and McNaughton Avenue in North Quesnel. The construction cost as bid will be approximately $5 million. The total project value, including all land, business case development, financing costs, and so on, will be approximately $6.4 million. BC Housing is providing approximately 95% of the financing ($3.3 million as a grant, $300,000 of which is from the federal government), and the rest is a mortgage loan. BC Housing is the BC government agency charged with assisting access to housing in BC (click here to go to the BC Housing website).

Why this project? Affordable housing in Quesnel has been identified by the City of Quesnel and others as a key social need, particularly for Seniors. Please review our Needs Assessment and Plan for more information on the need for the project.

The number of “affordable units” will depend on project financing: the more donations of money, goods and services, the more we can offer and maintain affordable rental rates, and the faster we can launch other projects.

 

Full speed ahead!

Thanks to support from many parties, Final Approval of BC government financing for the project via BC Housing was achieved in the fall of 2017. The project is now under construction, and we expect to be hosting tenants by the end of 2018!

Here are key milestones along the way:

  • In 2011/2012, the Quesnel Lions Club consulted with the community on needs, identified and purchased a site in 2012, and started the Quesnel Lions Housing Society (QLHS) to pursue the project.
  • Held discussions with neighbours of the proposed project and others. This consultation process has continued throughout the development process.
  • Held a number of discussions with the City of Quesnel regarding regulatory requirements and support that the City may provide.
  • Researched more than 20 Lions Club housing projects across BC plus more elsewhere in Canada. We did that to gain insight into how to make the Project as successful as we can.
  • Researched recent studies on housing needs in Quesnel to clarify the need for this Project and obtain information on how to design it.
  • Prepared a Needs Assessment and Plan for BC Housing and other financing targets (click here to review that report.)
  • Conducted geotechnical and environmental assessments on the site (no issues were discovered by either study)
  • Applied for major financing support from the BC government.
  • Purchased a neighbouring lot that added 50 percent more land to the project, allowing more parking and lower density on the site.
  • Achieved BC government Final Approval of the project in the fall of 2017, and started construction.

Next steps

  • Continue to communicate with, and receive feedback from, the neighbourhood and the broader community about the project.
  • Continue the "Buy and brick" campaign for support from the community and community businesses, because every dollar we raise reduces the mortgage, and helps us maintain affordable rents.
  • Develop policy for recruiting tenants and operating the building.
  • Open for business by end of 2018!Please Help

 

 

 

Project concept

See the site plan and first floor layout below (design by Access Engineering and GW Steward Architects Inc.).

 Site Plan as of August 2016

 
Quesnel Lions Housing Society
PO Box 4535
Quesnel BC V2J 3J8
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