The housing shortage for Yorkton low- to moderate-income seniors was reduced last week by almost a third with the official opening of Allan Bay Manor in the city's south end.
The 22-unit home took a bite out of Yorkton Housing Corporation's wait list, but chair Les Arnelien said there is still a way to go to solve the housing crisis.
"I think it's imperative that we continue looking for possibilities for new projects," he said. "At the present time, even with our 132 units, we have a waiting list of over 50 people to come into the facilities we presently own and operate."
Arnelien went on to say that the effect of a new facility such as Allan Bay on the housing market is basically two-fold.
"It does a lot for affordable housing within the city of Yorkton," he explained. "Of the people who moved in there was approximately seven people that owned houses, that sold the houses and moved in here. The other people lived in apartments and that left their apartments available for other people within our community to move in, so, it did generate another 22 units for other people within the city of Yorkton."
The two-year, $3.5 million project was a joint initiative of Yorkton Housing Corporation, the Province of Saskatchewan and the federal government. The local organization paid 30 per cent leaving the two higher levels of government to provide 2.4 million.
"Through Canada's Economic Action Plan, our government is taking concrete steps to help ensure economic recovery and long-term growth," said Garry Breitkreuz, MP. "Funding projects like Allan Bay Manor will not only improve the overall housing conditions for seniors, but also helps to stimulate the local economy and create jobs."
Since November 2007, 66 new housing units have been created in Yorkton with the help of the feds and Province. Last year the Government of Saskatchewan committed $344 million representing an expected 12,600 new and rejuvenated housing units.
The opening of Allan Bay Manor was marked by an official ribbon-cutting ceremony and luncheon at the home last Wednesday attended by an enthusiastic group of residents and staff, Breitkreuz, MLA Greg Ottenbreit representing the Province, Yorkton Mayor James Wilson and a full complement of local media.