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60 more ‘tiny homes’ to be built in Kelowna, alongside Highway 97

The plot of land alongside Highway 97 North in Kelowna where 60 tiny homes will soon be built. Google Maps

More ‘tiny homes’ are coming to Kelowna.

In making the announcement on Thursday, the City of Kelowna and B.C.’s Ministry of Housing said the 70-square-foot homes, 60 in total, will be built on city-owned land at 2740 Highway 97 North, close to the intersection at McCurdy Road.

Click to play video: 'BC Housing to reveal locations of tiny homes this week'
BC Housing to reveal locations of tiny homes this week

That’s alongside several businesses near the busy highway. And across the road are more small businesses plus automotive dealerships.

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Global News has reached out to Tourism Kelowna and the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce about the impact of placing 60 tiny homes alongside the highway and area businesses.

Meanwhile, the city and province touted the site, saying the new modular-housing development will be operated by a non-profit organization.

“These new homes ensure that more vulnerable people in Kelowna have a safe, warm place to stay, with access to the supports they need to stabilize their lives,” said Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Housing.

“We know these are only temporary options and there is more to do to create the permanent homes that lead to safer and healthier communities. I’m committed to working with the City of Kelowna and our non-profit partners to bring in more permanent supportive housing to address homelessness and the housing security challenges many are struggling with.”

Click to play video: 'Neighbours react to tiny home community for homeless'
Neighbours react to tiny home community for homeless

The province says it’s providing a grant of $3.9 million for the homes from its Homeless Encampment Action Response Temporary Housing (HEARTH) program and will provide annual operating funds.

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“Every effort that helps people access safe and dignified housing options is a step in the right direction,” Tom Dyas, mayor of Kelowna.

“These rooms will reduce the number of people needing to shelter outside and allow people to connect more easily with health and wellness services.”

The city and province say work is expected to begin in December, and that the site will open in early 2024.

“BC Housing and the city will provide opportunities for neighbours in the immediate area to learn more about the development,” said the joint statement.

Click to play video: 'Tiny home village working to transition people out of homelessness'
Tiny home village working to transition people out of homelessness

In October, the city and province announced that 120 tiny homes would be built in Kelowna, beginning with 60 at 759 Crowley Ave., in Kelowna’s North End neighbourhood.

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“Both projects are intended as temporary housing solutions,” said the statement, “providing time for BC Housing to continue working with the city to identify and build new permanent supportive housing.”

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