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Fraser Valley Living, Home Buying, Market Intelligence, Real Estate News | October 27, 2023

Transforming the Housing Market in Kelowna

The Canadian housing market is undergoing significant transformation. This is thanks to federal funding and leadership reshaping how cities approach housing development.

There is a strong focus on higher-density housing, student accommodation, transit-oriented homes, and affordable housing. Aiming to create more options for Canadians at affordable prices.

This positive change has reached Kelowna. Here, the Government of Canada and the City have announced a groundbreaking agreement.

This agreement will fast-track the construction of 950 housing units in Kelowna over the next three years. There is potential for up to 20,000 more homes in the coming decade.

The Housing Accelerator Fund (HAF)

At the core of this transformative initiative is the Housing Accelerator Fund (HAF). It provides over $31.5 million to break down barriers to housing development and enable faster progress.

The HAF facilitates higher-density development along rapid transit routes. It also makes city-owned lands available for affordable housing projects in collaboration with non-profit organizations. Additionally, it encourages the use of technology to streamline building permit applications. Kelowna, a city leading in infill housing, is committed to expanding its as-of-right zoning for more infill housing in its core. This will significantly enhance housing accessibility.

A Unique Kelowna Opportunity: ONE Varsity

ONE Varsity, located in the vibrant hub of Kelowna’s new University District, offers a one-of-a-kind community. Here, the city’s evolution is dynamic and exciting. Residents enjoy smart and functional living spaces in this new downtown center. It is next to the future UBCO campus and within walking distance of the lake. It’s a rare opportunity to live in the heart of a walkable, social, and community-oriented hotbed of brains, energy, and ideas. This home catalyzes the story of a new Kelowna.

“Today’s announcement will help fast track over 950 homes in the next three years and up to 20,000 homes over the next decade in Kelowna. By working with cities, mayors, and all levels of government, we are helping to get more homes built for Canadians at prices they can afford.” – Sean Fraser, Minister of Housing

The Impact on Kelowna

Kelowna’s commitment to this endeavor is evident. The HAF is set to cut red tape and accelerate the construction of at least 100,000 new homes for Canadians nationwide. Kelowna’s innovative approach aligns with the HAF’s vision. This includes accelerating project timelines, permitting increased housing density, and promoting affordable housing units. Collaborative efforts between local governments, non-profits, and the federal government will create a more diverse, attainable, and affordable housing landscape.

“Everyone deserves a place to call home, that’s why increasing diverse, attainable, and affordable housing options is one of Council’s top priorities. We are grateful for the Government of Canada’s significant investment that will further advance Kelowna’s innovation and commitment to accelerate housing for our rapidly growing community. The Housing Accelerator Fund is key to propelling us forward to meet the needs of today and into the future.” — Tom Dyas, Mayor of the City of Kelowna


The collaboration between the Government of Canada and the City of Kelowna, as exemplified by the Housing Accelerator Fund, represents a significant stride towards addressing the housing challenges Canadians face. With a focus on affordability, accessibility, and innovation, the future of housing in Kelowna looks promising. As this initiative progresses, potential homebuyers can anticipate more housing options that cater to their needs and budgets, making Kelowna an even more attractive place to call home. This partnership embodies the commitment to building more homes for Canadians faster and more affordably. The addition of ONE Varsity to the city’s landscape exemplifies the vibrancy and innovation Kelowna offers to its residents, making it a unique and exciting place to call home.


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