COURTENAY, B.C. – An affordable housing project in Courtenay is gaining momentum and receiving high praise from local officials.

Construction on the Braidwood project began in February 2018 and is expected to be completed in January 2019.

BC Housing is the main financial provider on the M’akola Development Services-led project, covering over $4 million of the cost. Other funds have come from the Comox Valley Regional District’s Homelessness Grant Program.

The City of Courtenay provided the land for the project and waived some of the development cost charges.

“They’ve both been really supportive all the way through the project,” said Lindsay Monk, Project Manager with M’akola.

Once completed, the building at 810 Braidwood Road will offer 35 units for men and women experiencing or at-risk of homelessness.

The building will include a mix of studio and one-bedroom units, with a live-in caretaker suite featuring an attached office, common areas with balcony, and a support worker room.

Outdoor space will see private patio areas and a covered shelter/smoking area.

Monk said those looking to rent when units become available next February will be able to apply directly through the M’akola Housing Society, as well as project partner the Wachiay Friendship Centre.

The total project cost is listed at $7,253,923 and Monk said it’s on budget.

“It’s going really well. We have AFC Construction, which is a local Courtenay-based construction management company and they’ve been doing a really excellent job of keeping us on budget,” Monk said.

Six of the units will be at the shelter portion of income assistance rate of $375 a month. The rest of the units will be at a low end of market rate. Studios will rent between $375 and $623 a month. The one-bedrooms will be between around $730 and $760 a month, according to Monk.

“The (Comox Valley) Coalition to End Homelessness has been really supportive of the project throughout its development. All the partners have really come together and been super supportive, so that’s great,” she said.