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Would you like to live above a fire hall?

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – The City of Vancouver is partnering up with the YWCA once again to build new low-income housing this time in southeast Vancouver.

A new 31-unit apartment will be built on top of a new fire hall at East 54th at Kerr St.

Councillor Kerry Jang says building on top of city-owned facilities is the key to providing affordable units.

“We are using any type of land and any space we can to build as much housing as possible. Vancouver land is very expensive. We already own that land that we’re building a new fire hall on. Let’s put housing on top,” he explains.

He notes that this is the just the latest in what’s being called an innovative partnership.

“The other YWCA project is on top of the new Strathcona library in east Vancouver. We’ve also provided a mix of condos and rentals above the library at Kingsway and Main.”

Single mothers will be the target market. There will be two and three bedroom units for single mothers and their children, which will rent from $500 a month up to $980 per month for a three bedroom unit.

The partnership between the City and the YWCA is the latest in a series of projects that see the City utilizing community facilities as a way to deliver new affordable housing. Last month, the City approved a proposal for the YWCA to build low-income housing above a new library in Strathcona.

“The City is dedicated to looking at every possible option for getting new affordable housing built, and our partnerships with the YWCA are leveraging real results,” said Mayor Gregor Robertson. “This new housing will provide safe, affordable homes for mothers and their children, and at the same time create a new community hub by combining it with a new fire hall for the neighbourhood.”

The total budget for the project is $9 million, with $5.5 million from the City and $2.2 million contributed by the YWCA. Construction is expected to start in the winter of 2014.