Construction is underway on 30 affordable housing units in Invererme that will be made available to families, seniors, and women and children escaping violence.

The new townhouse project will be downtown, providing easy access to amenities for the residents. The official address is not being disclosed to protect those that are fleeing domestic violence situations.

The 30 affordable units came to fruition because of a partnership between Invermere, Family Dynamix Association, and funding partners with Columbia Basin Trust and the BC Housing.

Speaking to MyEastKootenayNow.com, Mayor Al Miller said the project is years in the making.

“We’ve worked hard with Family Dynamix to try and find the right place for them and suitable zoning,” said Miller. “Between Family Dynamix, the District of Invermere, and then them going out to CBT and the Province, there is a project actually started building right now in town and it’s certainly welcomed.”

Construction officially started back in November 2020 and is expected to be fully complete by summer 2023, still a few years away from being usable by the community.

The B.C. Government said the final project will have 15 homes for low-income families and seniors and another 15 homes, with access to support services, for women and children leaving violence.

“This is a good start, I hope it’s not the end, I hope we can fulfill a lot more of these, but this is going to be a great start,” said Miller. “30 units coming to market that will be dedicated towards people with just a little bit lower income and these people are valuable people in our community.”

“We’re going to be able to have condos here, places for them to live that are going to be a little bit more reasonable and that in my books is fantastic,” continued the Invermere Mayor. “We want safe places, and the same with the more supportive-type housing units for women and children and such, where they’ve possibly fallen a little harder times just at the moment and need safe places to live. It’s a huge plus for the community.”

Family Dynamix will operate and manage the applicants for the affordable housing units.

Miller said the location is ideal as he continued to express his pleasure that the project is underway.

“Proximity to shopping, proximity to other downtown services, it’s very walkable – walkable to the hospital, walkable to the clinics. It’s a great location – 30 units, we’ve known we’ve needed this for a long time and it’s coming to our community.”

Across British Columbia, the B.C. Government is planning to provide $4.9-million to the Building BC: Women’s Transition Housing Fund with annual operating funds of $95,000 for 15 townhouse projects.