Many people have questions about our programs, especially affordable housing. Here are some of the questions we have gotten and our responses about our new East Tower.
Is the East Tower a new shelter/supported living project?
It isn’t. All 58 units are suites that are priced below market value to allow people to live affordably downtown. Our idea is that if people can afford to pay rent downtown, they will be closer to work, schools, and amenities in Saskatoon.
Don’t affordable housing projects of this size negatively affect the area in which they are located and the people who live there?
Any badly conceived or poorly managed apartment building can create all sorts of negative issues for those who live in or near it. Downtown has been impacted by poorly managed apartments in the past and has seen the benefits of improvements from new owners and new practices in the present. The Lighthouse has real-world experience in providing supportive housing for those recovering from homelessness, has participated in the City of Saskatoon’s Crime Free Multi-Housing program, and has applied these lessons in developing its Housing Plus process. The Lighthouse is a local organization with strong roots to the city of Saskatoon. The last thing we would want to do is build a project that would negatively impact our community or the downtown business district.
We have also taken steps to ensure that we have good relationships with our neighbours.
What was the thinking behind the size of the apartments.
Single-room or studio accommodations are common in affordable housing projects located in the downtown core of other cities. For example: the city of Vancouver has recently produced more than 280 studio-style apartments on three downtown sites; the city of Portland has encouraged development of more than 800 single-room or studio-type accommodations to house low-income and/or previously homeless individuals. Fully self-contained small apartments meet the most pressing need in Saskatoon at this time.
What are the dimension of the suites?
- 4 suites at 540 square feet
- 6 suites at 530 square feet
- 6 units at 350 square feet
- 7 units at 515 square feet
- 7 units at 620 square feet
- 7 units at 660 square feet
- 21 units at 435 square feet
Is excellence in affordable housing sustainable?
The Lighthouse is dedicated to success for those men and women strongly committed to escaping life on the streets. Our research, and in-depth consultation with our neighbours, will help us expand our influence and effectiveness. The community, working together, will make this a place of change all of Saskatoon can be proud of.
How has this proposal been received in the community and by the experts?
The Lighthouse has worked diligently with our community, neighbours, provincial and the federal government for 2 1/2 years to develop a plan that will work for the downtown core, and for all Saskatoon.
Why was the thinking behind the design of the new tower?
Our goal has been to build a sturdy 100-year building. The original design was based on community consultation, Saskatoon zoning and design requirements and the need to fit in with the downtown core. The building is attractive and functional, and fits in nicely with the other new buildings in the area.
Are pets allowed?
The building is a pet free facility.
Is it smoking or non-smoking.
All suites in the East Tower are smoke free and starting on September 1st, 2012 the entire Lighthouse is smoke free.