The District of Tofino will sell an apartment it owns to help pay for an affordable housing project. (Westerly file photo)

District of Tofino agrees to sell apartment to help pay for affordable housing project

One-bedroom Gateway apartment unit to be listed at $195,000.

Having reached a conclusion that it needs to make money to spend money, the District of Tofino will sell an apartment it owns to help pay for its controversial affordable housing project.

The town’s municipal council voted unanimously to put a one-bedroom apartment, located at the Gateway Development on Gibson Street, up for sale at $195,000 as a price-restricted and resident-restricted unit with the sale proceeds going to the Tofino Housing Corporation.

That $195,000 price tag represents a roughly 25 per cent discount to the 490 sq. ft. apartment’s assessed value of $260,500 and the sale will include an agreement ensuring it cannot be flipped for market value.

Tofino will then hand the proceeds over to the THC to be put towards a roughly $535,000 bill for a new road and servicing at District Lot 114, which has been earmarked for an 84-unit affordable housing project.

The land, which includes five lots, was rezoned following a recently concluded, though lengthy and heated, public engagement process and is set to become three duplex lots and two apartment lots.

During their Aug. 25 regular meeting, council authorized its staff to transfer the land over to the Tofino Housing Corporation, which will then lease it to Catalyst Community Developments, it’s partner on the 84-unit project.

The THC’s executive director Ian Scott explained during the meeting that council needed to sign off on the planned sale and agree to transfer the land in order for a funding application to be sent to BC Housing.

Immediately after becoming the owner of the land, the THC plans to then lease it to Catalyst, which will then finance the development of the project, which is laid out in stages. The first phase is a 35-unit apartment building and the second phase is a 37 unit apartment building. The apartments, which will range from one to three bedrooms, will be rented at below market value determined by a pending housing agreement.

“They’re taking on the substantial debts required to build those buildings,” Scott said of Catalyst.

He said the lease would run for 60 years, though the THC would monitor Catalyst’s operations and the district has the option of purchasing the apartment buildings from Catalyst after seven years.

While the two apartment buildings will take up two of the five lots, one duplex lot will be sold and the remaining two lots will be developed with matching townhouse style duplexes, each with a secondary suite attached. Those two duplexes would then be sold with the proceeds going towards the costs of the two apartment buildings.

“We’re selling one lot as a market sale and that’s to help us pay back our loans for that road and servicing construction,” Scott said.

The district’s manager of community sustainability Aaron Rodgers told the Westerly News that Tofino obtained the apartment unit as a community amenity from the developer of the Gateway project in 2010. Rodgers said the apartment has housed several district staff members as well as Reserve RCMP members.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

READ MORE: Tofino council approves controversial rezoning that paves way for affordable housing project

READ MORE: Tofino housing project criticized at public hearing

READ MORE: Tofino housing project clears zoning hurdle

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Tourists’ vehicles vandalized in Tofino

Community steps up to support visitors.

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 27 to Oct. 3

World Farm Animals Day, Drink Beer Day and Virus Appreciation Day are all coming up this week

Vancouver Island Indigenous leaders supportive of B.C.’s new plan for old forest preservation

More than 260,000 hectares in Clayoquot Sound mapped for immediate old growth harvesting deferral

HISTORY COLUMN: Reflecting on the 32nd anniversary of Canada’s apology to Japanese-Canadians

Japanese-Canadians an integral part of Tofino and Ucluelet’s history.

No safe mask option for bearded members, RCMP says, but force is exploring solutions

RCMP says respirator not mandatory in all front-line situations, but sometimes needed to reduce risk

She warned her son about toxic drugs, then he was dead

Donna Bridgman’s son died at the age of 38 in Vancouver

Duration of Tour de Rock stop in Chemainus much shorter than usual

Four alumni riders don’t get to come for breakfast in COVID year

B.C. food and beverage producers set record sales in 2019

Farmed salmon again leads international exports

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Police seek help in naming Cowichan farm stand theft suspect

Video captured man prying cash box out stand on Norcross Road

Most Read