February 7, 2022 #22-04
For further information, contact:
Fred Armstrong at 604-467-7452
City of Maple Ridge seeking collaboration with BC Housing on City’s urgent housing priorities, including complex care for residents of new Fraser Street housing
“Residents at Fraser Street supportive housing require the right model and operator, with onsite professional healthcare services to ensure the best possible outcomes.” -
Maple Ridge, BC: As BC Housing begins public information meetings about its permanent 52-unit supportive housing development on Fraser Street, the City of Maple Ridge wants to ensure that complex care is part of the plan. When it opens later this year the Fraser Street development will replace temporary modular housing at Royal Crescent.
“Housing alone is not the entire solution,” said Maple Ridge Mayor Mike Morden. “Without the right care and programs, the problems residents and the neighbourhood face daily at Royal Crescent will simply move with them to Fraser Street, just two blocks away. The right model and operator, with onsite professional health support, will ensure people with complex care needs have a real chance to live better lives.”
The new modular-based project is slated for two residential lots on Fraser Street (11685 & 11695 Fraser Street) and an adjacent lot to the west (11686 224 Street). The project site is close to BC Housing’s temporary modular housing at Royal Crescent which is at the end of its useful life.
Morden said while the Province is using its authority to bypass the City’s normal approval process for developments, Maple Ridge wants to see complex care included at the Fraser Street project to deliver best possible outcomes for its residents and the broader community. This is in alignment with the goals and principles of the City’s Community Social Safety Initiative (CSSI) which envisions the provision of support services.
“The Province’s recent announcement of 64 rental units at Turnock Manor was good news for our community, and a reminder that Maple Ridge has a number of other identified housing needs that require the support and collaboration of the Province, BC Housing, and our City,” noted Morden. “City Council has given unanimous support to ten immediate housing and related priorities and has instructed staff to work collaboratively with BC Housing to move projects and programs forward as quickly as possible.
“Housing, and the programs and services that make it successful, are priorities for our City,” said Morden. “There is no question this is complicated and there is a lot to do, but we’re committed to doing what it takes to succeed and we hope BC Housing and the Province feel the same way. We have many common goals when it comes to housing needs in our City and working together is the best approach to achieving results”
The City has a list of housing priorities unanimously supported by City Council and wants to work on them collaboratively with BC Housing. They include:
Fraser Street (11685 & 11695 Fraser Street and 11686 224 Street)
The City requests that the site be developed as Complex Care Housing to address the needs of residents with overlapping mental health challenges, substance misuse problems, trauma and other complex disorders. The operator should be selected through a transparent process, and the City should actively participate in the operator selection process. In addition, the Operator and Province are requested to enter into a Good Neighbour Agreement and Housing Agreement with the City. This is important to ensure best possible outcomes for the clients served, as well the community.
It is also requested that City Bylaw and Fire staff be permitted routine access throughout the facility to ensure a safe environment for all, as well as foster effective working relationships with the operator, staff and residents. In addition, social programming space planned for Fraser Street should also be made available to residents and service providers.
Royal Crescent (22534, 22548 & 22556 Royal Crescent)
BC Housing announced last November that affordable seniors housing would replace the end-of-life modular units on Royal Crescent. The City asks that the Province announce its intention to move on an immediate development application that the City of Maple Ridge will process on an expedited basis.
11749 & 11761 Burnett Street - Garibaldi Ridge
The City is calling for a transparent selection process to identify the best model and operator for Garibaldi Ridge and to temporarily return to its purpose build of second stage housing, and that the City actively participate in the operator selection process. Further, that the Province commits to relocate the residents of Garibaldi Ridge to the expanded Salvation Army site and commence the building of seniors or affordable housing.
22207 Brown Avenue - Alouette Heights
The City is calling for a transparent selection process to identify the best model and operator for Alouette Heights, returning it to its purpose build of transitional housing for stays up to 24 months, with tenants signing personal program agreements.
Salvation Army located at 22188 Lougheed Highway
The City requests that BC Housing commit to working with the Salvation Army to expand the current facility, to accommodate Burnett (Garibaldi Ridge) residents in one phase, and provide a range of housing services and treatment. The City is already in the process of redesignating adjacent lands to Land Use designations that would support this form of development.
Emergency / Bylaw (CSO) Services:
In recognition of the cost that such residences often have on the community, BC Housing is requested to fund the addition of one Senior Community Safety Officer plus two Community Safety Officers under the City’s CSSI program, to work with social housing and outreach providers seven days a week, 16 hours a day. Funding is also requested for a full time Fire Prevention Officer for every low barrier facility.
That a commitment for capital and operational funding be provided to support housing youth up to 18 years of age who are precariously housed and face adverse conditions associated with mental health and substance use. Collaboration with the City on identifying a future location is requested along with funding for two full-time tenant liaison workers to work on the site.
Permanent Supportive Housing Facility
In alignment with the significant investments made and programs developed as part of the City’s CSSI demonstration project, the Province, through BC Housing and the Fraser Health Authority, is requested to fund the new facility, with operator in place, through collaboration and active City participation.
St. Anne Camp Closure Costs:
Costs related to the closure and remediation of the St. Anne Camp, in the amount of $1.62 million be reimbursed to the City as committed previously by BC Housing.
Affordable Family, Seniors and Rental Housing
With minimal rental housing built in Maple Ridge over the last thirty years, coupled with increases in average rents, it is becoming more challenging for low-income households to find affordable rental housing. BC Housing is asked to follow through with commitments made to the City to fund and build affordable rental housing for independent families, incorporate accessible units for the disabled, and/or seniors in Maple Ridge. Currently, there is a disproportionate number of renter households in core and extreme core housing need, low rental vacancies, aging rental housing, and limited family-friendly rental units in Maple Ridge. The Province is also requested to review the delivery of the rental supplements towards providing over-sight, accountability and consistent service delivery.
For more information please visit the City’s website at mapleridge.ca/2612