BC Housing has withdrawn its application for supportive housing in downtown Cloverdale.
In a press release issued Thursday afternoon (Sept. 20), BC Housing stated that it would withdraw the application after a request by the City of Surrey.
As the application has been withdraw, the open house planned for Thursday evening at the Pacific Community Church was cancelled.
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“Homelessness continues to be an issue in all areas of Surrey, including Cloverdale where there is a significant population of people in need of a home with support services,” read the press release. “The Province will continue working with the City of Surrey and non-profit housing providers to create much-needed homes with the necessary supports for people who are experiencing homelessness.”
BC Housing said the City of Surrey has committed to bring forward “appropriate alternative locations” for supportive housing this fall.
The proposal — to build a 60-unit, four-story supportive housing development in the business core of downtown Cloverdale — met with significant opposition from the Cloverdale Business Improvement Association and community groups.
In an Aug. 28 interview with the Reporter, BIA President Dean Moore explained that “it just seems like the right project in the wrong area.”
The Cloverdale town centre, which the BIA represents, is “a small town,” he said. “We have two main commercial streets, if we don’t include No. 10 highway, and we’d be taking away what could be potentially commercial properties by turning it into [supportive] housing.”
The sentiment that it was the right project in the wrong place was echoed by mayoral candidates and current city councillors Tom Gill and Bruce Hayne this morning, when they weighed in on the project.
Gill explained that because no formal application has been brought in front of city council, the project is at a “very preliminary stage.” He said he believed that “starting over is the right option” when it comes to the supportive housing proposal.
Hayne, a Cloverdale resident, said “This isn’t NIMBYism. We all know supportive housing is needed, and there’s all types and levels of supportive housing, but when we’re talking about a 60-bed unit in downtown Cloverdale beside daycare, and all these things, it just doesn’t make sense.”