Construction has started on two affordable rental developments in the Central Okanagan, the provincial government announced on Thursday.
According to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing, the two rental developments will create 250 homes. It also said some have moved into a recently completed townhome complex.
“The rental vacancy rate and costs in Kelowna makes it a struggle for many to pay market rents due to supply and demand,” said Kelowna mayor Colin Basran.
“That’s why these developments are so important, adding to the ‘missing middle’ of housing inventory identified in the city’s 2017 Housing Needs Analysis.”
The two rental developments under construction are a four-storey building at 1060 Cawston Avenue in Kelowna, and three four-storey apartment buildings in West Kelowna at 2200 Majoros Road.
The Cawston Avenue project will provide 40 affordable rental homes for low- to middle-income residents. Monthly rents are projected to range from $375 for a studio to approximately $1,835 for a three-bedroom rental.
The Majoros Road project will provide 186 new rental homes for people with middle incomes, for households making between $50,000 and $100,000.
Projected monthly rents for the studio, one- and two-bedroom homes will range from approximately $1,210 to $1,590.
The ministry said 21 families are now living in a recently-completed project at 165 Celano Crescent in Kelowna. Monthly rents for the fully occupied development are $915 for a two-bedroom townhome and $1,100 for a three-bedroom townhome.
“People deserve safe and secure homes, but even middle-income people like teachers and small business owners have struggled to find affordable housing in the Kelowna area,” Selina Robinson, B.C.’s Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, said in a press release.
“These new homes will mean that people — from young families to seniors — can stay in their community, close to their friends and family.”