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Affordable housing project for teachers in Vancouver to go to public hearing

27 units of housing would be created.
The proposed building.

Teachers just entering the career may have a unique housing opportunity soon.

City councillors have sent a project to a public hearing that could provide 27 housing units specifically for early-career teachers. The application is to build a five-storey mixed-use building at 2929 Commercial Drive at the intersection with 13th Avenue. The application comes from the Vancouver Elementary School Teachers’ Association (VESTA) and the Vancouver Secondary Teachers’ Association (VSTA), which own the property and have offices in the current building.

In a report to council, city staff note the need for affordable housing and to recruit teachers for Vancouver schools.

"A membership survey conducted by VESTA/VSTA indicates that teachers are struggling with housing costs in Vancouver. The teachers said that finding housing in Vancouver is a recruitment and retention issue, and many teachers are choosing to relocate outside of Vancouver for lower rents and wider housing availability," states the report.

A commercial unit would be included at the ground level as would new VESTA and VSTA offices.

The building there now, a three-storey structure, has the VESTA and VSTA offices and commercial space downstairs, but no residential space.

Because of bylaws and the rezoning needed to allow the project, it must go to a public hearing before city council can decide whether to approve it. The public hearing is set for July 13.

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