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Feds financing housing builds in Whistler, Squamish, Bowen Island

Nearly $90M made available through low-interest loans
The Whistler Housing Authority's new build about to get underway at 1450 Mount Fee Road will benefit from federal financing. Pictured is 1360 Mount Fee Road in Cheakamus Crossing, completed earlier this year.

Housing projects in Whistler, Squamish and on Bowen Island are getting a boost from the federal government in the form of low-interest loans.

Officials made the announcement on Oct. 13 in Whistler's Cheakamus Crossing neighbourhood.

In total, nearly $90 million is being made available through the Canadian Government's Rental Construction Financing Initiative (RCFi) to help pay for four different housing projects: two in Whistler, and one each in Squamish and Bowen Island.

In Whistler, the announcement included $19.8 million in RCFi financing for 58 units at 1315 Cloudburst Drive. Completed in April, the project is overseen by the Whistler 2010 Sport Legacies Society, which contributed $8.7 million.

It also covers $15.2 million in financing for the Whistler Housing Authority's 48-unit building at 1450 Mount Fee Road. The Resort Municipality of Whistler is contributing $1.5 million, and the WHA $3 million.

“Whistler has long recognized the importance of community support for housing our workforce locally. Now, more than ever, we see the housing crisis all around us in every community in B.C.," said Whistler councillor and WHA board chair Jen Ford, in a release.

"This new build marks another step towards our community's commitment to this endeavour as well as our climate goals.”

In Squamish, $45.7 million in RCFi will help pay for 105 units at 38115 Laurelwood Road. Bosa Properties is kicking in $15.8 million.

And on Bowen Island, the government is providing $8.75 million and $30,000 in seed funding for 25 units at 510 Bowen Island Trunk Road. Bandon Holdings Ltd. is contributing $383,800.

“The Government of Canada is committed to working with communities to meet the challenge of building affordable housing. Through RCFi, our government is increasing the supply of new and affordable rental units by investing $89.5 million to build a total of 238 units in Whistler, Squamish and on Bowen Island," said MP Patrick Weiler, in the release.

"These energy efficient and accessible homes will benefit low and middle-income individuals and families, making our communities more inclusive and equitable.”

The RCFi provides fully repayable low-interest loans to encourage the construction of more purpose-built rental housing for middle income Canadians, creating a positive impact to the housing system at minimal cost to taxpayers.

It's just one program included in the government's National Housing Strategy, which aims to invest more than $82 billion over 10 years.


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