Mayor Robertson welcomed today’s announcement from Premier Campbell and Minister Rich Coleman of $225 million in new money for social housing in Vancouver, calling it a major step towards achieving the City’s goal of ending street homelessness by 2015.
"This is great news for Vancouver, and is a major step towards our goal of ending street homelessness by 2015," said Mayor Robertson. "Today’s announcement of $225 million brings the total provincial investment for new social housing in Vancouver to $333 million since December 2008. Our partnership with the provincial government is paying off and delivering real results for the people of Vancouver."
When Mayor Robertson took office in December 2008, there was no funding in place for the 14 sites of social housing the City had secured for the Province. In March 2009, the Province committed to funding the first six sites of social housing in Vancouver, with a capital investment of $108 million. With today’s announcement of $225 million in funding for the remaining eight projects, all 14 sites now have provincial funding; six are already under construction and the first will open in early 2011.
The City is contributing a total of $64 million in land for the 14 social housing sites.
"In the last 18 months we’ve been able to collaborate effectively with the Province," said the Mayor. "Whether it is temporary shelters, immediate housing like Dunsmuir House, or permanent social housing like the 14 sites, our partnership of the City securing land and the Province providing operating funding is getting new, creative housing projects up and running.
"The result is that we’re making a difference on homelessness. The HEAT shelters helped decrease the number of people sleeping on the street by 400 over the past year and a half. We’ve now got 14 sites of social housing fully funded, which will provide over 1500 new units of social housing.
"Our goal is to end street homelessness by 2015. We’ve still got a long way to go but today’s announcement is proof that our constructive partnership with the Province is working and that we’re on the right path."
Photo credit: City of Vancouver