Council to vote on $20,000 affordable housing project grant application at Monday meeting

Prince Albert City Hall -- Herald file photo.

City of Prince Albert administrators have recommended council approve a $20,000 grant request from River Bank Development Corp. to build four new affordable housing units in the West Flat.

If approved, the units will be built on 12th Street West near Sacred Heart Cathedral, and on 14th Street West near Lions Park.

A report included in the agenda package for Monday’s regular council meeting anticipates the project’s total cost to be $1,050,000. River Bank Development Corporation has requested $1,030,000 in funding from the Saskatchewan Housing Corporation and Conexus Credit Union.

Approval is subject to River Bank obtaining a building permit for the properties. River Bank will also enter into a 15-year operating agreement with the City of Prince Albert as part of the Affordable Housing Program.

The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation estimated in 2023 that Saskatchewan will have a supply gap of 60,000 homes by 2030. In March 2024, the Saskatchewan Realtors Association released a report saying Saskatchewan housing inventory was at its lowest point since 2006.

Section 6 of the City of Prince Albert’s Official Community Plan states that the city has a critical need for affordable housing, since those units can stabilize neighbourhoods and create a more efficient path for families who need community support.

The City of Prince Albert will fund the $20,000 grant from the Housing Reserve as part of its Affordable Housing Program. The program provides funding for up to three applicants every year, with a maximum grant application of $30,000.

As of April 30, the Housing Reserve has a projected balance of $295,660.

If approved, the River Bank Development Corp. project would be the second application to receive City support this year.

The item is one of 14 reports on the agenda for Monday’s meeting. The agenda also includes three public hearings, and a motion from Coun. Terra Lennox-Zepp on Cannabis Retail Hours of Operation.