CALGARY: Over the last 21 months, more and more Canadians have faced increased pressure to find affordable housing that meets their needs. Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion, and Jyoti Gondek, Mayor of Calgary, have announced that residents have begun moving into Vista Apartments, a newly renovated 120-unit building for independent Seniors aged 55 and older.
Over $15.5 million of federal funding was provided to Silvera Homes for Seniors. This investment is a part of an initial $24.6 million allocated to the City of Calgary under the Major Cities stream of the Rapid Housing Initiative.
Owned and operated by Silvera for Seniors, Vista Apartments is a former all-suites hotel in Calgary’s northeast community of Horizon. The one- and twobedroom apartments include kitchens with fridge, cooktop, convection microwave, and dishwasher. The building features shared laundry facilities, parking, and an in-site sports court. Residents began moving in on December 1st, and full occupancy is expected in Spring 2022.
This funding is in addition to the Government of Canada’s recent investment of $16.6 million through the second phase of the Rapid Housing Initiative to support the creation of up to 60 additional housing units in Calgary, bringing the total creation of affordable units to 236 so far.
In its initial round, with funding of $1 billion announced in October 2020, the RHI exceeded its original target of 3,000 permanent affordable housing units and achieved 4,700 units nationally. Due to this success, an additional $1.5 billion for the Rapid Housing Initiative (RHI) was recently announced to create 4,500 new units of permanent affordable housing across the country.
Thanks to this expansion, this initiative will now create over 9,200 affordable homes for the most vulnerable Canadians across the country. This new investment will create thousands of good jobs in the housing and construction sector, grow the middle class, and build back stronger communities, while getting us closer to our goal of eliminating chronic homelessness in Canada.
Hussen said: “Every Canadian deserves a safe and affordable place to call home. The arrival of Seniors to Vista Apartments shows that the Rapid Housing Initiative is working. Our government will continue to support those who need it most by quickly providing 120 new affordable homes for Seniors in Calgary. This is just one of the many ways our National Housing Strategy continues to ensure no one is left behind.”
George Chahal, Member of Parliament for Calgary Skyview, said:“Everybody deserves a safe and affordable home. Our government’s Rapid Housing Initiative is helping increase Calgary’s supply of new affordable housing for those in need.
Today, Vista Apartments in Northeast Calgary is offering affordable places to call home for seniors living in Calgary. This $15.5 million investment is another great example of our federal government working for Calgarians.”
Jyoti Gondek, Mayor of Calgary, said: “This opening of Silvera’s Vista Apartments marks the first Calgary project made possible through a new approach to housing partnership between The City and our federal partners. As we tackle the challenges of affordable housing and homelessness in Calgary, we need to expand partnership with all orders of government to deliver creative housing solutions.”
Arlene Adamson, CEO, Silvera for Seniors, added: “We are delighted to open this innovative building that provides homes for seniors who are in the greatest need of safe and secure housing. At Silvera we offer homes for older adults, including subsidized housing and well-priced retirement living options so all Calgarians have housing choices in our city. We committed $3M to this project and are proud to be the first to deliver this RHI building, on time and on budget. We are excited to move in our first residents and we share our gratitude with the Government of Canada and The City of Calgary who made this project possible.”
• The RHI is delivered by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), under the National Housing Strategy (NHS).
• Canada’s NHS is an ambitious, 10- year plan that will invest over $72 billion to give more Canadians a place to call home and was Launched in 2017.