A rendering of a proposed six-storey 63-unit modular apartment building along 104th Avenue in Guildford. (Photo: surrey.ca)

Public hearing set for two Surrey modular housing projects for homeless

Surrey council set to vote Monday on projects in Guildford, Whalley

A public hearing is planned at Surrey City Hall Monday for a pair of modular housing buildings for the homeless.

The two projects – one in Whalley and the other in Guildford – would be the first of several permanent supportive housing sites promised by the provincial government to replace the temporary ones set up in Whalley last summer.

Ultimately, the 250 promised units of housing are expected to be split between five sites.

In Guildford, a six-storey 63-unit modular apartment building is proposed “for the homeless, those at risk of becoming homeless, and ancillary support services” at 14706 104th Avenue, near an existing shelter, and directly north of Hjorth Road Park.

“Support services will include life skills training, employment assistance, and a range of social and health care services,” a report to council notes. “Residents will also be referred to external health care, mental health, and addiction services and other services and opportunities as required.”

Residents must be over the age of 19, “have a history of homelessness or are at risk of becoming homeless, and require support services,’ and priority would be given to Surrey residents.

Further, the report states “all residents pay rent and must sign a Program Agreement that addresses expectations about appropriate and respectful behavior, especially as it relates to the health and safety of themselves and others.”

City staff wrote in their report that there have been some concerns raised about the project by the public, including the “negative effect” the proposed housing could have on the area’s safety, that it’s too close to Hjorth Road Elementary, and that “there is a concentration of social services in the area.”

To proceed, the Guildford property requires council’s blessing to rezone the property and an OCP amendment is needed to allow for higher density.

Another three-storey modular apartment building will be considered Monday night. That building is proposed for 13425 King George Boulevard and would have 38 units.

It’s located not far from a homeless camp that’s established in a forested area just off of King George.

READ MORE: ‘FIGHT 4 HOMES’: Surrey homeless call for housing one year after tent city dismantled

homelessphoto

(Rendering of a planned modular housing apartment building at 13425 King George Blvd. Photo: surrey.ca)

That property formerly housed a motel and today consists of four buildings operated by Fraserside Community Services Society. In 2013, council approved the modification of the motel into a “high services housing facility” that’s now known as Peterson Place.

If the proposal is approved, two existing strutures on the northwest side of the property would be removed, and the new apartment building would be constructed.

A report to council noted one resident called the city to voice opposition, expressing concerns about drug use and trafficking on the street, and that this “residential neighbourhood is not the appropriate place for a permanent supportive housing facility.”

To proceed, the proposal requires council’s blessing to rezone the property, as well as an OCP amendment.

A proposed site for a similar modular housing project in Cloverdale was withdrawn by BC Housing last fall, after public opposition.

READ ALSO: Mixed emotions on Surrey’s Strip as homeless begin moving into modular units

SEE MORE: Count finds 49 per cent more homeless people in Surrey

The provincial government announced the Rapid Response to Homelessness (RRH) in 2017 as an “immediate response” to the growing issue of homelessness across the province.

“Partnering with non-profit organizations, local governments and community groups, BC Housing is investing $291 million to build over 2,000 modular supportive housing units across BC with support services for individuals who are experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness,” a report to Surrey council notes.

In Surrey, the RRH Initiative consists of two phases.

In phase one, the province opened three temporary housing projects with approximately 160 units last summer.

Phase two of the initiative involves delivering the 250 permanent modular supportive housing units across the City of Surrey, the report to council states.

The public hearing meeting is set to begin at 7 p.m. at Surrey City Hall on Monday (July 22).

SEE ALSO: The struggles and successes of Surrey’s homeless housing project



amy.reid@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook and follow Amy on Twitter

Just Posted

Crime, crashes in Delta down in second quarter of 2019

Persons offences such as assaults and arsons have gone up since 2018, though crime overall is down

Man injured in early-morning Surrey shooting

Police say it was targeted and it ‘may be connected to drug trafficking’

‘Do the right thing,’ implores sister of South Surrey stabbing victim

IHIT confirms male arrested in connection with Paul Prestbakmo’s death no longer in custody

KPU hosts first welding summer camp in Surrey for high school students

Weeklong course funded by LNG Canada and the Canadian Welding Bureau

Groovy South Surrey wedding a throwback to Woodstock ‘69

Couple hosts themed wedding 50 years after legendary festival

VIDEO: Could we BE any more excited? ‘Friends’ fans go crazy for merch

Movie theatres will show select episodes to mark the NBC series’ 25th anniversary

VIDEO: Organization’s stolen wheelchair van recovered on backroad near Hope

Wheelchair accessible van is only transportation for some people in Hope area

Officials say 50 Oppenheimer Park residents have agreed to leave, as deadline looms

Residents have been told they must be gone by 6 p.m. on Aug. 21

Five hedgehogs quickly adopted after being left at BC SPCA

Lucky new owners picked up their pets from Maple Ridge branch on Aug. 20

B.C. cricket players get interrupted by racist remark

Community has had protocols in place for years to respond to prejudice

Nearly 50% of Canadians experience ‘post-vacation blues’: poll

48 per cent of travellers are already stressed about ‘normal life’ while still on their trip

More women may need breast cancer gene test, U.S. guidelines say

Recommendations aimed at women who’ve been treated for BRCA-related cancers and are now cancer-free

B.C. manhunt suspects left cellphone video before they died: family

Family member says Kam McLeod, Bryer Schmegelsky recorded final wishes

Most Read