Work has started on 20 new temporary homes for seniors in Princeton who were displaced by the November floods last year.
The BC government made the announcement on Wednesday.
“The flooding in Princeton last year was devastating to the community,” said Attorney General and BC Housing Minister Murray Rankin in a press release.
“These new homes will provide temporary relief to seniors affected by the flooding, so they no longer have to worry about having a place to call home. We know there is a lot of work that still needs to be done and our government is committed to supporting the recovery.”
The development will house seniors who were previously living in the Silvercrest apartment buildings, which were severely damaged by flooding.
Silvercrest tenants who have not been able to secure housing elsewhere will be offered the option to move into the new units, paying the same monthly rent as they were paying prior to the flood.
Any remaining units will be made available to other eligible Princeton-area seniors.
“For people in Princeton, finding appropriate, affordable housing was difficult, even before last year’s floods,” said Boundary-Similkameen MLA Roly Russell in the press release.
“B.C. and the Town of Princeton have been working closely since then to find ways to help community members. These units will provide temporary homes for seniors in Princeton, while we continue to work with all our partners on permanent housing solutions to build Princeton back even better.”
The provincial government provided a $1.4 million grant for the project, while the Town of Princeton provided the land, located in Stan Thompson Industrial Park, on a five-year lease.
BC Housing will also support this project with funding and is in discussions with the town and other partners to secure permanent replacement housing.
Meanwhile, the new homes will be operated by the Princeton and District Community Services Society (PDCSS).
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“PDCSS is thrilled to see the development of a temporary housing development that will provide tenants with a sense of security and routine that has been lacking since the flooding events of November 2021,” said PDCSS executive director Becky Vermette.
“PDCSS wishes to thank BC Housing and the Town of Princeton for their efforts to bring this much-needed development to the community of Princeton.”
The new development will consist of 10 modular units, each with two separate one-bedroom apartments.
Each apartment will have a kitchen, private bathroom, and balcony. Laundry will be available in each modular home, shared between two units. Landscaping for privacy and outdoor space for tenants.
“Although not a permanent solution, I am happy that we will have an interim housing option for those who were displaced by the November flood,” said the mayor of Princeton Spencer Coyne.
“This is a unique solution, and the town is thankful to the Province and BC Housing for working with us toward a stable housing option until that permanent solution is found.”
Construction is expected to be completed in early 2023.
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