Affordable Housing

Our Community Housing Team works with a focus on the non-market side of the housing continuum and along the length of the development process, from assessment and planning to proformance and development approval to design and construction. Our breadth ensures that our planning recognizes the practicalities of development, while our development activities are rooted in an understanding of the issues. Our approach emphasizes deep understanding, collaboration, innovation, and action-orientation no matter the project.

Understanding: Out team brings experience in scoping the challenges, from homeless counts to housing needs assessments, as well as experience working in and with community housing organizations, and government. Our approach brings with it an understanding of the challenges, and also the opportunities.

Collaboration: No one actor can ‘solve’ a housing crisis, and rarely can one actor effectively deliver a piece of the solution alone – deep networks in communities across Western Canada, and strong relationships with local governments, non-profits and social serving organizations, and businesses allow us to bring the right parties around the table to move forward.

Innovation and Action-Orientation: As with everything we do at Urban Matters CCC, our aim is to identify and help to create the vehicles and mechanisms for action, and ultimately improved outcomes for people. In all our Community Housing projects we leverage the collaborative environment we foster, and our cross-sectoral presence, to identify and catalyze innovative solutions – from prototype projects to enduring housing partnerships, to creating the missing partner in a housing ecosystem through Social Enterprise Development – we’re agnostic about form, and fanatical about sustainable impact.

Our projects span housing types, target populations, and the development process – to get a sense of what we’re working on, explore some of our case studies, and brief project descriptions.

Case Study: City of Calgary – Housing Renewal Planning

From the Federal government’s recently released National Housing Strategy to Alberta’s Provincial Affordable Strategy there’s reason to be hopeful about enhancing the affordable housing inventory in Alberta. With such an emphasis on the building of new affordable...

Case Study: Richmond Homelessness Strategy

Homelessness in Richmond is often not a topic that catches much public attention, especially with the far more visible homelessness challenges in neighbouring Vancouver. But homelessness is an issue for the City of Richmond too, with 70 individuals identified in the...

what we’re working on

Calgary Urban Sustainablility Housing Renewal Project

in 2017 and 2018 Urban Matters CCC led a combined Urban Matters-Urban Systems team as a partner on a redevelopment plan for two City of Calgary affordable housing properties. The redevelopment will significantly expand occupancy, while also focusing on building more complete communities with access to supports and amenities for whole communities. The Urban team contributed a situational analysis, detailed housing needs assessment, and a financial analysis of options for redevelopment.

City of Richmond Homelessness Strategy

Along with BC Non-Profit Housing Association Urban Matters CCC is working with the City of Richmond to update their Homelessness Strategy. The stakeholder focused – co-creation project will focus on gap analyses, best practices reviews and finally strategy development.

City of Kelowna Housing Needs Assessment and Healthy Housing Strategy

In 2017 Urban Matters CCC worked closely with the City to incorporate an asset-based and resilience lens to the City’s Housing Needs Assessment. Work is ongoing to support the City’s Healthy Housing Strategy with best practices research, technical analysis to refine strategy options, and support in stakeholder engagement.

Strathcona Regional District Housing Needs Assessment

Urban Matters CCC in the beginning of 2018 led an Urban Matters-Urban Systems team in delivering a quantitative housing needs assessment for the Regional District. The project includes a needs analysis and assessment of the Region based largely no public, and stakeholder data, as well as an engagement component to assess housing need in smaller communities in the Region.

City of Vancouver Homeless Count

Urban Matters CCC in 2018 participated in planning and delivering the 2018 Vancouver Homeless Count, alongside many other partners. Urban Matters has supported survey development, survey planning and coordination, and is leading data analysis and report development.

Gibsons Affordable Housing Development

Urban Matters CCC is working with the Town of Gibsons and the Sunshine Coast Affordable Housing Society to develop a mixed income rental development of 30-40 units. Urban Matters’ project contributions included a Town-owned land review, community engagement activities, and consultation with architectural consultants to develop site plans and designs, and a capital budget.

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