Homeless modular housing project near Trout Lake reaches completion

Mar 25 2020, 12:54 pm

Construction has reached completion on Vancouver’s newest temporary modular housing building for the homeless, coincidentally just in time for the COVID-19 pandemic, when physical distancing and heightened social and health service measures are being enacted for the most vulnerable.

BC Housing announced today Naomi Place at 3598 Copley Street — near the southeast corner of Trout Lake Park, and close to SkyTrain’s Nanaimo Station — has opened, providing 58 self-contained homes within a three-storey modular building.

The first residents began moving in this past Monday, with the housing project prioritizing those who are currently experiencing homelessness in the same neighbourhood.

Like other modular housing projects, each unit includes a private washroom and mini kitchen. Residents will share a commercial kitchen, dining and lounge areas, storage and amenity space, and laundry facilities.

As well, around-the-clock supports are provided to the residents, including meal programs, life and employment skills training, health and wellness supports, and opportunities for volunteer work. A minimum of two staff members will be on site 24/7.

“We look forward to being part of community-wide efforts to welcome our new residents and integrate this temporary modular housing site with its surrounding neighbourhood,” said Julie Roberts, executive director of Community Builders, the non-profit housing operator for the building.

The provincial government provided $8.4 million for the construction cost, plus an annual operating subsidy of about $878,500. The municipal government provided the land required.

Within over two years, over 2,100 supportive homes — largely through temporary modular construction — have been built across BC. There are 900 additional supportive homes underway, with a goal of 4,900 units over a decade.