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Port Alberni tiny house community secures provincial funding

Province will provide $726,000 to create 30 tiny homes, plus $75,000 in start-up costs, as well as about $850,000 for annual operating costs

A tiny house village under construction in Port Alberni has received provincial funding to set up and operate 30 small homes for those without a place to live.

The first 20 units are expected to be ready in February, with another 10 to follow.

The Walyaqil tiny shelter village is one of three tiny home communities established on Vancouver Island to assist people without homes, following similar villages in Victoria and Duncan.

The Port Alberni Friendship Centre will manage the site, providing around-the-clock staffing to support residents’ health and wellness and provide life-skills training, meals and culturally appropriate services for Indigenous people.

The village is being built on three lots leased from the city on 4th Avenue. The city is also covering municipal utility costs and providing a $165,000 grant. Another $226,000 is coming from the Friendship Centre.

B.C. Housing is contributing $726,000 for the project, plus $75,000 in start-up costs. It will also spend about $850,000 for annual operating costs, as part of a provincial, municipal and friendship centre commitment to deliver more housing to vulnerable Port Alberni residents, a provincial news release said Wednesday.

A women’s transitional housing project is being built now and plans call for a permanent supportive housing building in the future.

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