31-storey rental tower, including 100 affordable homes, now complete at Burquitlam SkyTrain

May 17 2023, 12:48 am

A sizeable secured purpose-built rental housing tower has reached completion next to SkyTrain Burquitlam Station in Coquitlam.

Local developer Concert Properties has just finished construction on its 55One tower at 551 Emerson Street — a 31-storey rental housing building containing 308 units, conveniently located just a three-minute walk from the SkyTrain station.

This includes 100 affordable homes funded by the provincial government for people with low or moderate incomes, with monthly rents ranging between $375 for a studio and $570 for a two-bedroom unit for low-income residents, and between $394 for a studio and $1,783 for a three-bedroom unit for moderate incomes. Residents within the higher income limit will see rents of between $1,550 for a studio and $2,970 for a three-bedroom unit.

The affordable housing component of the tower is operated by 43 Housing Society, which is affiliated with SHARE Family and Community Services Society.

The remaining 208 units in the tower are at market rents, leased and managed separately by Concert Properties.

The provincial government provided $10.6 million through BC Housing’s “Building BC: Community Housing Fund” towards the construction costs, and has committed to a $571,000 annual subsidy to the non-profit housing society to operate the affordable homes.

Other contributions to the affordable housing component of the tower include $20 million from Concert Properties, $3.85 million from the City of Coquitlam’s Affordable Housing Reserve Fund, and $274,000 from Metro Vancouver Regional District through waived development-related fees.

Furthermore, the federal government provided a $109-million, low-cost loan through the Rental Housing Construction Financing Initiative of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

“Our government is working with partners to deliver the homes and create the communities people need throughout the province. 55One is the latest example of how we can work together to build a province where everyone has a good place to call home and no one gets left behind,” said Premier David Eby in a statement.

Claire MacLean, the CEO of the non-profit society, added: “Having a safe, secure and affordable place to live means giving seniors peace of mind and independence, giving adults living with disabilities dignity and hope for the future, and giving hard-working families a chance to thrive and prosper in the community of their choice. Affordable housing of this magnitude is only possible with strong partnerships between the charitable sector, government and the development community.”

All residents will have access to 20,000 sq ft of common amenity spaces, including indoor and outdoor lounges, patios, and a communal kitchen.

55One is immediately adjacent to the new 55,000 sq ft, three-storey Bettie Allard YMCA community and recreation centre, which includes an aquatic centre, gymnasium, walking track, fitness gym, fitness class studios, a dedicated Family Centre, community spaces, and a cafe. The YMCA facility opened early this year.

heart of coquitlam 55one myriad burquitlam concert properties march 2023 f

March 2023 construction progress on Heart of Coquitlam, with the 55One rental tower (left), the completed Bettie Allard YMCA (middle), and the near completion and the Myriad condo tower (right) in the early stages of construction. (Google Maps)

Bettie Allard YMCA burquitlam coquitlam f

Bettie Allard YMCA (Concert Properties)

55One and the YMCA are part of Concert Properties’ overall Heart of Burquitlam redevelopment, which includes a 50-storey condominium tower currently under construction, and public park space. Myriad, the name of the condominium tower, containing 468 strata units, is expected to reach completion in 2026.

Heart of Burquitlam is the north site of Concert Properties’ redevelopment of two large separate sites near the SkyTrain station, with the larger south site being a redevelopment of Whitgift Gardens. Both sites combined will produce eight towers and roughly 2,700 homes. The various public benefits, including the significant YMCA, are based on negotiations with the municipal government on the allowable density allocated to both sites combined.

Wedged between the Heart of Burquitlam and the SkyTrain station, the eight-acre Burquitlam Plaza strip mall is being eyed for a separate redevelopment by Morguard Investments — comprised of six towers up to 53 storeys, containing over 2,200 homes, including at least over 1,000 rental homes in the first phase. The project is designed by Endall Elliott and Raymond Letkeman Architects.

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