Low-income residents may soon have more rental choices pending City Council’s approval of an Affordable Housing Program application by Prince Albert Community Housing Society Inc.
Section 6 of the City’s Official Community Plan states that “the need for affordable housing is critical. Adequate housing can stabilize neighbourhoods and enable the community to wrap services around individuals and families who require them.”
A report by City Planner Jorden Olmstead explained that the Development Services Department applied for $30,000 from the Affordable Housing Program to build six dwelling units in Prince Albert.
“As part of the program, Prince Albert Community Housing Society Inc. will be required to enter into a 15-year Operating Agreement with the City for each property. The agreement guarantees that these dwelling units will be rented at an “affordable” rate for the entire term,” continues the report.
Two developments are included under one application due to the program’s requirements that non-profit organizations can only submit one application annually and funding must also be provided from other levels of government for each project.
“Under this application, funding will be directed to the construction of two multi-unit residential buildings with a combined eleven dwelling units, which includes a five-unit building to be located at 656 20th Street East and a six-unit building to be located at 1492 7th Street East,” reads Olmstead’s report.
Under the agreement, an “affordable rate” is defined as 80 per cent of the market rate calculated annually by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. (CMHC), or the maximum rental rate established by either the Sask. Housing Corp. (SHC) or CMHC.
The anticipated cost for the project is $2,860,000, with the SHC reported to be contributing $267,000 towards the construction of the new dwellings.
Since the launch of the program in February of 2019, four applications have been approved and the provided funding has contributed to the creation of 18 affordable rental dwelling units in Prince Albert.