Location of proposed homeless shelter.

Council holding public hearing for proposed homeless shelter zoning change

A special council meeting will be held tonight at city hall to facilitate a public hearing involving a zoning amendment for a property that is being proposed as a potential homeless shelter.

The property, 209 16th Ave N, is features a building that is being pitched a as homeless shelter that will include 40 sleeping pods and inter-connected services offered by the Community Connections Society of Southeast BC, which will operate the facility, with funding from BC Housing.

The public hearing will begin at 6 p.m. and will be live-streamed on the city website.

The deadline to speak at the hearing has already passed, however, written comments can be submitted to the city through mail slot or email submissions up to 4 p.m. on Feb. 1.

Written feedback has already been submitted to the city and is included in the meeting’s agenda package.

The property is owned by Terry Segarty of 2 Baker Developments, who is asking the the city to change the zoning, therefore permitting the operation of a homeless shelter and related services.

The proposed operator, CCSSBC, is already on site inside the building, offering a number of social services, along with organizations such as ANKORS, Homeless Outreach Program and Prevention Program and a walk-in counselling clinic.

The homeless shelter would be located in a large space that was previously used as a commercial fitness centre.

The CCSSBC has a three-year agreement in place with BC Housing to operate the shelter, with options for two one-year renewals.

The zoning amendment was given first and second reading two months ago, however, council has twice delayed the public hearing due to requests for more operational details from BC Housing.

The provincial crown corporation held an open information session online, with input from BC Housing and CCSSBC officials on Jan. 13, while also presenting to city council on Jan. 18.


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