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Municipal and Provincial financial support paves way for new housing project in Lethbridge

Collaborative funding support from the Province of Alberta and the City of Lethbridge has led to a project that will soon bring 50 new housing units to the city. 
At its October 3 meeting, Lethbridge City Council voted in favour of conditionally supporting a capital funding request of $1,295,000 to CONCEPT. Investment Partners Ltd. (CIPL) for an affordable housing project located at 1730, 10 Avenue South (the former Seasons Lethbridge Retirement Community building).  
The Edwards, which will be the property’s new name, project from CIPL will include: 

  • The completed purchase of the property and the renovation/retrofit to include a total of 50 units
  • 37 of the units would be considered as affordable by the City’s definition (30 per cent or less of provincial income thresholds)
  • Further background on this project is available here and here 

Following a municipal funding allocation, CIPL was awarded $2,227,500 in funding from the Government of Alberta’s Affordable Housing Partnership Program (AHPP). Jason Nixon, Alberta’s Minister of Seniors, Community and Social Services, announced further details on Friday.
"On behalf of Lethbridge City Council, I want to thank Minister Nixon and the Provincial Government for the financial support toward this important project in our community," says Acting Mayor Mark Campbell. "We know housing is a major topic of concern, so Council is also supporting this project with nearly $1.3 million in capital funding. We often get asked about this building, in particular. Even though the City does not own or manage this property, we are pleased to be able to contribute to it being used for a vital purpose moving forward."
The City’s capital funding allocation was conditional to the securement of matching provincial or federal funding for the project. No operational funding has been requested from the City of Lethbridge. 
Upon announcement in July 2023 of the provincial AHPP funding application deadline, the City’s Community Social Development (CSD) team reached out to 17 local partners to determine which groups were positioned to apply and how the City could support application. The City’s Affordable and Social Housing Capital Grant (CC49) is closed until a comprehensive review has been completed. However, with an opportunity to leverage the provincial AHPP, these funding requests were proposed to support project viability.

"Bringing together Municipal and Provincial funding to support a for-profit organization engaging in social enterprise is a unique way to address a critical issue in our community," says Matthew Pitcher, the City’s Housing Solutions Coordinator. "As the national housing crisis continues, it is through creative efforts and methods like these where positive outcomes will continue to occur."

"As we embark on this transformative journey with the support of both the Government of Alberta and the City of Lethbridge, we are deeply honoured to partner with them to address the critical need for affordable housing for seniors in our community," said Ken Harvie, Managing Partner of CIPL.

"With all 50 units below market rates and 37 meeting the City of Lethbridge's definition of affordable housing, The Edwards directly addresses the urgent need for accessible and affordable housing options for seniors in the community. Through collaborative efforts and shared vision, we are confident that together, we will make a difference in the lives of our seniors and contribute to the prosperity of our community for generations to come."

The Edwards project's total cost is estimated at $6,250,000, with the balance of the project being funded through other sources (private donation, debt, agency funds, etc.). 
The property will be adapted to contain 50 independent living suites, for individuals aged 55+, with bachelor, one-bedroom, one-bedroom-plus-den and two-bedroom options. A portion of the main floor will be ear-marked for a deli/grocery to provide service to the 50 suites and the surrounding community which includes Chinook Regional Hospital. 

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