BETHANY, Saskatchewan, October 11, 2005 — Construction for a 45-unit seniors' housing complex featuring an innovative geothermal heating and cooling system was announced today in Saskatoon thanks to federal, provincial, and municipal funding.
"The Government of Canada is proud to be part of this innovative approach to seniors' housing in Saskatoon," said Ralph Goodale, Minister of Finance and Member of Parliament for Wascana, on behalf of Joe Fontana, Minister of Labour and Housing. "The uniqueness of this complex, with its geothermal heating which will help reduce greenhouse gases and energy costs, is an example future developments can follow."
"These 45 new units will offer access to on-site support and services," said Community Resources and Employment Minister Joanne Crofford. "Once again, Homefirst is delivering to our seniors the independence to live in safe, affordable housing."
Funding of $1.9 million through the Centenary Affordable Housing Program (CAHP) is helping to build the addition to Bethany Manor, operated by Saskatoon Mennonite Care Services Inc. at 110 La Ronge Road. The seniors' complex will provide approximately 27,600 square feet of additional living space to an existing facility in the form of 17 one-bedroom and 8 two-bedroom life-lease units, and 14 one-bedroom and 6 two-bedroom affordable rental units.
"Bethany Manor fills a very crucial need in our community," Mayor Donald Atchison said. "It adds affordable housing, while helping a very important target population as identified in the Saskatoon Community Plan on Homelessness and Housing. Partnerships like the one we have with Bethany Manor are what make Saskatoon special."
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) is contributing $947,650 to the project through CAHP. As well, Saskatchewan Housing Corporation is providing $758,120 and the City of Saskatoon $189,530. The project is part of the province's HomeFirst strategy to make affordable housing options available in Saskatchewan. The balance of the funding for the project consists of land, equity, in-kind contributions, equity from occupants, and mortgage financing.
The building's innovative geothermal heating and cooling system, worth approximately $1.1 million, began operating today and is expected to save approximately $100,000 a year in utility and operational costs. The environmental impact in terms of greenhouse gas will mean a reduction of almost 3 million kilograms of carbon dioxide annually.
The complex is owned and operated by a community-based non-profit organization of 12 Mennonite churches in Saskatoon and surrounding area, which already has 325 people living on-site in a mix of 237 condominium, affordable living, and assisted living apartments.
For more information, contact:
Saskatchewan Community Resources and Employment
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation