The Aboriginal Housing Society of Prince George has high hopes for a rezoning application that will be presented to city council on Monday.
The Society would like to rezone the property at 1811 Spruce Street to build not for profit seniors housing.
“Our organization hasn’t built anything new since 1994 when social housing finally came to an end,” says Leo Hebert, executive director of the Aboriginal Housing Society. “We’re targeting this age group because we have quite a waiting list for people who are aging and needing single bedroom accommodation.”
The proposed development will consist of a 27-unit, 3 story apartment building that will be open to individuals and couple 55 and over. Hebert says it will feature doorways that can accommodate mobility aids such as wheelchairs and walkers and the building’s energy efficiency will make utilities affordable for residents.
Family housing was once the highest demand in the city but that’s changed, says Hebert.
“There still is a need for individual housing and more for families. But we’ve aged, the population has aged and elders are a priority so we’re focusing on what their needs are.”
Hebert says the AHS development is “barely a start” toward meeting current housing needs.
“We participated in the research that the City of Prince George did that identified seniors housing as a priority for this community. On our waiting list that we have within our housing society, there’s almost 150 people that could fit this potential development.”
He says the Spruce St. location is ideal for seniors as it is close to the hospital, grocery store, bus routes and other amenities.
Hebert is optimistic the city will approve the request to rezone two of the seven lots it owns from RM4 (multiple residential) to RM6 (mid-rise residential). The AHS hopes to break ground on the project in the spring of 2017.