The United Church of Canada wants to convert a portion of its Austin Heights property into a housing development with 75 below-market residential units.
The proposal is possible thanks to the land donation and a $4.5-million funding commitment from BC Housing, which would ensure that all units are rented at least 15% below average rental rates.
“I think it is fantastic that churches are getting involved in these kinds of projects,” said Coquitlam Councillor Teri Towner.
She added that several parishioners at the church with whom she had talked noted that attendance was down and that they did not need the same space for parking they once did. “There are lots of things to like about this project,” she said.
According to a staff report, the current church facility, located at Marmont Street and King Edward Avenue, will be removed and incorporated into the first two storeys of the new development.
The project will consist of 25 studio units, 32 one-bedroom units, 10 two-bedroom units and eight three-bedroom units.
Council voted unanimously in favour of moving the development forward to a public hearing.