More details have been announced regarding Fort Saskatchewan's newest affordable housing project, the Muriel Ross Abdurahman Court, named after the former MLA and Fort Saskatchewan mayor.
On Wednesday (Jan.19), federal minister of housing and diversity and inclusion, Ahmed Hussen, and Alberta seniors and housing minister, Josephine Pon, were joined by mayor Gale Katchur, Fort Saskatchewan-Vegreville MLA Jackie Armstrong-Homeniuk, and other officials to make the announcement.
"Every Canadian deserves a safe and affordable place to call home. Our government is committed to helping those who need it most, which is why we are pleased to partner with our provincial and municipal counterparts, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and Heartland Housing Foundation, to make a real difference in the lives of people here in Fort Saskatchewan and everywhere in Canada," said minister Hussen. "This is the National Housing Strategy at work."
The project, currently under construction, created about 121 jobs during the planning, design and construction phases of the development. The project's total cost is estimated at $17.3-million, of which $6.2-million will be funded through the governments of Alberta and Canada's bilateral agreement under the National Housing Strategy.
An additional $6.5-million in funding will also come from the feds through the National Housing Co-investment Fund as well as $3-million from Natural Resources Canada and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities Green Municipal Fund.
The City of Fort Saskatchewan donated the land and contributed $1.1-million. A $500,000 federal tax rebate also went toward the build.
The 83-unit building is unique in that it combines different building materials, such as shipping containers for the main floor and traditional wood framing on the second, third and fourth floors. It's a net-zero project as well, meaning it will be self-sufficient and could potentially put energy back into the grid if it overproduces.
Rent for the units will be determined at 20 to 30 per cent below where market value will be once the building opens in the fall.