Columbia Basin Trust was pleased to take part in the grand opening celebration of Canadian Mental Health Association for the Kootenays’ new multi-purpose facility in Cranbrook recently. CMHAK hosted the celebration upon completion of its new corporate office headquarters, the Connor Stewart Training Centre, and the Peter Johnson Complex which has new program service space and 18 affordable housing units.
One of the Trust’s strategic priorities is helping communities address affordable housing issues. Residents throughout the Basin have told the Trust that affordable housing is a concern, and we contributed $154,000 to this project.
“No one group does this sort of thing alone. Housing projects are costly. Partnerships are vital to the success of projects like this one,” said Aimee Ambrosone, the Trust’s representative at the grand opening.
“The CMHAK staff and board of directors came to us with a plan and the community already on board, which made it much easier for us to say yes to providing funding,” she added.
“Although we call it a ‘project,’ that doesn’t begin to describe the importance of these facilities. These new housing units will make a real difference in the lives of the people who will be living there. That’s something we can all be proud of every time we think of our role in bringing this facility to life,” Ambrosone said.
This new facility arose from the increasing need for more programming and administration space in Cranbrook and from the growing demand for more affordable housing units in the community. The new buildings are located on an existing 35 unit family housing property owned by CMHAK. The 18 new housing units are intended for low to moderate income older adults.
The total value of this multi-purpose project was $5,800,000. CMHAK contributed $1.7 million with the remaining amount covered by a mortgage CMHAK took out with the assistance of the Province.
Columbia Basin Trust has been a long-standing partner in affordable housing efforts throughout the Basin. Since 2009, we’ve brought 405 units to 13 Basin communities through affordable housing initiatives with local housing organizations, the federal and provincial governments, and student housing initiatives with local colleges.