About 2,700 units of new homes are built or underway for students, seniors, families and people experiencing homelessness in Greater Victoria.
These homes are contributing to more than 20,000 homes that are being built or have been built in about 80 communities in the province to help address the affordable housing crisis.
The province is looking at building 10,000 units per year with a target of 96,000 units in 10 years. Currently, they’re on track.
The 2,700 units in Greater Victoria also include modular units.
“We’ve started with the most vulnerable populations, people who didn’t have any housing at all and that’s with the modular units but we’re actually looking at a range of different sorts of housing,” said Esquimalt-Metchosin MLA Mitzi Dean. “Community housing, Indigenous housing, women’s transition housing, affordable rentals, student housing…by tackling all of these different areas across the province we’re going to increase capacity and make sure people get the right housing for their needs.”
Dean said the affordable housing crisis has been building over the previous 16 years and said she has heard from many constituents about the struggle to find affordable, safe places to live. She said businesses and professions are even having a hard time recruiting people to move to the area because of affordability issues.
“People were having to make choices between paying for shelter or food or kids activities,” Dean said. “From a women’s perspective, they’re making choices between safety and having shelter.”
In Dean’s constituency, she said homelessness isn’t seen outright in the streets. Rather, people are moving into more precarious shelter like their vehicles. She said people are still working and trying to make ends meet, but the cost of housing makes that difficult.
A map showing the location of all announced projects including the ones in Greater Victoria can be found online at bchousing.org/homes-for-BC.
“This will fill the gap to ensure there’s safe, affordable, quality housing for the people who need it,” Dean said.