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Tiny homes produced and ready to be deployed to Kelowna

Click to play video: 'Tiny home community site in Kelowna coming along'
Tiny home community site in Kelowna coming along
They have been manufactured and are ready to be transported to Kelowna. That's the word tonight from the U-S company producing the garden shed-sized homes slated for a tiny home community for the unhoused population in the city's north end. As Klaudia Van Emmerik reports, the company is waiting for the green light from the city to get the homes on the road to Kelowna – Dec 7, 2023

The site is still being prepped but the 60 tiny homes that will make up the tiny home community for the unhoused population in Kelowna, B.C., are ready to go.

“The shelters have been produced and are ready to deploy,” said Amy King, CEO of Pallet Shelter.  “The City is working on getting the site ready (power, water, sewer, etc) and I’m not clear on the targeted deployment date at this time as we’re not in control of that.”

The site, along the 80o block of Crowley Avenue in the city’s north end, is currently being prepared for the homes.

BC Housing said the work being done right now involves ground preparation and utilities ahead of the installation of the units.

Across the street, residents of the city-designated outdoor sheltering site are anxiously watching the progress.

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“They’re busy working away at it for sure, yeah,” said tent city resident Ryan. “They are hard at work at it so it’s nice they are working at it now before it gets cold.”

Global News reached out to the city to learn more about the timeline of when the tiny homes could be up and running but no one was available to comment Thursday.

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 an email to Global News, BC Housing said it hopes to have the project completed early in the new year.

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As for who will operate the site, that remains unknown.

BC Housing said it is still working on securing a qualified operator to manage the homes.

“This process has taken longer than anticipated but we have received applications and will be sharing publicly who the operator will be in the coming weeks,” stated the email from BC Housing.

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There’s the question of who will be selected to live in the tiny homes. There is no shortage of people who need a roof over their head — including Ryan, who says sleeping in a tent is getting harder and harder as the weather gets colder,

“You’re just surviving day to day,” Ryan said.

Even though he would like a tiny home, he doesn’t believe it’ll be that easy to access.

“No one has relayed to the people living here about them,” Ryan said.

He added that he heard from two different sources last week that those residing in shelters will have priority.

“You have to be registered with a shelter first before you have access, so the shelters will pick and choose who they want in them,” Ryan said.

While no official announcement has been made on the selection process for a tiny home, BC Housing has said in the past that the tiny homes will free up shelter beds.

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

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