New rental apartment buildings proposed on Edge Street in Maple Ridge, drawn by Integra Architecture.

New rental apartment buildings proposed on Edge Street in Maple Ridge, drawn by Integra Architecture.

Proposed rental unit project nearing end of Maple Ridge’s approval process

Would see 209 rental units in the city’s downtown core

Renters in Maple Ridge could soon have a new option in the downtown core.

Maple Ridge council is in the process of approving a plan for 209 new rental apartments in a five-storey complex. It will be comprised of two buildings located at 12155 Edge St., which is directly across from Eric Langton Elementary.

“We desperately need more affordable housing in our community, and I think it’s a fantastic application, so I’m very, very happy to see this come forward,” said Coun. Kiersten Duncan at the latest council review of the project.

“I really appreciate the work that’s gone into this. I think it’s going to be a great benefit to our community.”

The city’s Housing Action Plan was endorsed by council in 2014, and it identifies rental housing as a priority.

The vacancy rate in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows was reported at two per cent in October 2019, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

Anecdotally, many people have reported it almost impossible to find a suitable rental unit in Maple Ridge in recent years. Overall in Metro Vancouver, the vacancy rate has been reported at a tight one per cent. The vacancy rate in purpose-built rental units is even tighter across the region.

READ ALSO: Metro working to bring affordable housing to Pitt Meadows

The land was formerly the site of a seniors home.

Now a vacant lot, the developer needs a zoning amendment to repurpose the land.

December saw the project progress through the city’s approval process, with the zoning bylaw amendment going through a public hearing and then receiving third reading.

All that remains is council’s final adoption of the project.

The applicant is Vancouver-based real estate developer Townline Homes.

The project will offer 41 two-bedroom units, 128 one-bedroom, and 40 bachelor suites. There will be 230 off-street parking spaces, both in underground parking and in an above-ground parking garage.

The development will include outdoor space for barbecue and dining, a giant chess board and multi-purpose lawn.

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