The B.C. government has purchased a 115-suite, seniors’ residential tower at 1450 West 12th Avenue, Vancouver, for the exclusive use of the homeless or near homeless on the Downtown Eastside.
“We are taking action to find homes for those who live in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside,” said Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Housing on April 11. “With the West 12th purchase, this is another 115 units that will help break the cycle of homelessness for people on East Hastings and in Crab Park.’
The former Chalmer Foundation seniors’ housing facility will provide those currently sheltering at Crab Park and East Hastings with wrap-around 24/7 support and access to health care.
The 12-storey concrete building features bachelor suites with in-unit bathrooms, several lounge areas, a central dining room and office space for staff as well as a commercial kitchen on the ground floor.
The province, through BC Housing, paid $40.5 million for the tower, and plans to spend $10 million on renovations. Estimates of ongoing operating costs, include round-the-clock staffing, have not yet been released. Rents will be covered by the BC shelter allowance, which increases this July to $500 per month.
When Colliers listed 1450 West 12th Avenue for sale last year, it described the property as “just steps away from the ultra-trendy South Granville shopping district, which features a mix of high-end fashion boutiques, home furnishing stores, cafés and restaurants.”
All senior residents were previously relocated to Rideau Residence at 1850 Rosser Ave. in Burnaby as a part of a separate 2022 partnership with the province and BC Housing. Renovations of 1450 West 12th Avenue are expected to begin this spring, with residents anticipated to begin moving in by fall 2023.