Is the affordable housing project being stalled?

By David F. Rooney

Is Revelstoke’s $1.4 million affordable housing project being stalled by City Council?

Members of the Community Housing Society certainly think so.

The society originally thought their project could go ahead this summer, then this autumn and now — if they’re lucky — they might get the go-ahead this winter or even see it put off until next spring.

During the August 12 Council meeting Mayor David Raven said getting the 12-unit project under way is staff’s highest priority “but for whatever reason” it is not proceeding as quickly as Council and the society would like.

Society Chairman Mark McKee says red tape is holding things up. The agreement between the City and the Society with respect to use of the land at Bridge Creek Properties on Oscar Street is 57 pages long.

“Do we really need a 57-page document?” he asked rhetorically.

McKee believes the clear answer is “No.”

The society is also hot to acquire a building permit sooner, rather than later but provincial regulations prevent the City from granting that until every I is dotted and T crossed.

BC Housing and the Columbia Basin Trust are putting $1.4 million into the project, which will see one-bedroom condos available for rent for $500 a month and two-bedroom units for $700.

The overall effect is that this badly-needed project is going nowhere in a hurry.

You can watch Council’s discussion on YouTube between the 1:02:46 and the 1:29:15 marks on this video: