The number of social housing units on the Downtown Eastside will get a boost with two new projects on the horizon, one of which is a new building on an empty parking lot.
Roddan Lodge and the Evelyne Saller Centre
The six storey Roddan Lodge at 124 Dunlevy Street in Railtown — a social housing building for low-income seniors — was built in 1977 and has reached the end of its useful life.
A new 11-storey mixed-use building, designed by dys architecture, will replace the aging structure. It will have a total of 213 units of social housing. Each unit in the new development will have its own self-contained three-piece bath, an improvement over the current shared bathroom setup.
The nearby Evelyne Saller Centre will also be relocated to the new building.
177 West Pender Street
The City of Vancouver’s affordable housing agency, Vancouver Affordable Housing Agency (VAHA), plans to build a 10-storey social housing project on a narrow surface parking lot between Cambie and Abbott streets.
The building will be made up of 90 micro suites of 250 sq ft. The city says the micro suite format will provide the opportunity to house as many people as possible. Each unit will have a Juliet balcony, and there will be two shared outdoor spaces on levels 3 and 10.
All of the units are proposed as rental housing at or below market rents. One-third of the units will be rented at the shelter rate of income assistance, one-third at housing income limits (HILS) rates, and the remaining units renting at up to market rates. This meets the minimum requirement for social housing in this area of the Downtown Eastside.
There will be no vehicle parking as part of the development, but 68 bicycle parking spots will be provided. Like the Roddan Lodge, the project was also designed by dys architecture.