Rendering of the Harmony apartment proposed for the 15100-block of 20 Avenue. (Contributed graphic)

‘Inclusive, affordable’ South Surrey project aims to meet ‘desperate’ housing need

Public consultation on 91-unit ‘Harmony’ to launch online next month

Public consultation on a 91-unit affordable and inclusive housing project proposed for South Surrey is taking a twist due to the ongoing pandemic.

Doug Tennant, chief executive officer of UNITI – a partnership of Semiahmoo House Society, Peninsula Estates Housing Society and The Semiahmoo Foundation – said restrictions on gatherings have led to “a whole new ballgame” when it comes to collecting public input.

“Because of COVID-19… we’re going to be doing an online public-information meeting, and we want to make sure it’s a genuine way to consult with people,” said Tennant.

Starting June 15, the public can weigh in, ask questions about and comment on the Harmony apartment project via a website that is being to created to explain it.

“Every couple of days after June 15, we’ll be answering the questions that have come to us,” he said.

Input – to be collected through to June 27 – will also be gathered through email, by phone and via a survey, Tennant added.

The site proposed for the project is 5.5 acres that is owned by Peninsula Estates Housing Society. Located in the 15100-block of 20 Avenue, it is currently home to 52 townhomes and an 18-unit apartment building.

Currently at the development-permit application stage, Tennant said the hope is to break ground on the six-storey Harmony next spring. He noted the site does not require rezoning.

Tennant described the need for more such affordable and inclusive housing in South Surrey as “desperate,” noting the organization’s first inclusive project – Chorus, which opened its 71 units four years ago at 2358 153 St. – has been full from the get-go.

READ MORE: South Surrey’s Chorus development ‘a model we want to replicate’

“We realized (the need) when we completed Chorus: it was rented up immediately and vacancies are snapped up immediately,” Tennant said.

“The model works,” he added, describing a combination of inclusive, affordable and close-to-market-rate units that create a community which reflects a diversity of residents – from health-care workers and seniors to families and people with disabilities.

He hopes the upcoming consultation period will help quash “misinformation” about the project, including the belief by some that it is a for-profit development.

“We are a not-for-profit developer,” Tennant said. “We do not build for financial profit, we build for social profit of the community as well as the tenants that are going to live in the apartment.”

Other fears he wants to quell include that the project is a precursor to something bigger. Tennant said any future growth on the site would actually be smaller – townhouses and duplexes are a possibility – and, “would be 20 years away.”

He noted that while 17 of the 52 townhomes that currently exist on the proposed site are slated to be demolished to make way for the new building, the affected residents “will have first kick at the can” for a unit in Harmony, which is anticipated to be ready for occupancy by the end of 2022.

He expects the units to “fill up in a heartbeat, absolutely.”

The public-information website link is expected to be ready this week. For more information, email harmony@pehs.ca



tholmes@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

affordable housingdevelopmentdisabilitiesSurrey

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Cloverdale students make puzzles for care home residents

Students from Cloverdale’s Sunrise Ridge delivered gifts to seniors and thank you notes to first responders

White Rock dogs-on-promenade survey shows majority approval

City figures suggest that off-season program could continue

UPDATE: Pedestrian dies after being hit by bus in uptown White Rock

Collision occurred July 3 at North Bluff Road and Johnston Road

Intent of killing at centre of Surrey man’s West Kelowna murder trial

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Allison Beames is anticipated to return with her decision in August

PHOTOS: South Surrey tractor project evokes ‘$1-million smile,’ helps connect neighbours

Retired Surrey firefighter Ron Henze began project for friend’s dad to fill time during pandemic

PHOTOS: B.C.’s top doc picks up personalized Fluevog shoes, tours mural exhibition

Murals of Gratitude exhibit includes at least one portrait of Henry alongside paintings of health-care workers

In troubled times: Independence Day in a land of confusion

Buffeted by invisible forces and just plain worn out, the United States of America celebrates its 244th birthday

Stop enforcing sex work laws during COVID-19, advocates say

There are provisions in Canada’s prostitution laws that make workers immune from prosecution, but not from arrest

Liberal party finished 2019 having spent $43 million, raised $42 million

All political parties had until midnight June 30 to submit their financial reports for last year

B.C. teacher loses licence after sexual relationships with two recently-graduated students

The teacher won’t be allowed to apply for a teaching certificate until 2035

White-throated sparrows have changed their tune, B.C. study unveils

Study marks an unprecedented development scientists say has caused them to sit up and take note

Greater Vancouver home sales start to tick up, with prices holding steady

Residential sales last month reached 2,443, a 64.5 per cent jump from May

Langley Lodge’s deadly outbreak declared over

Fraser Health and long-term care home administrator confirm Friday declaration

Most Read