We at Peninsula United Church are astonished and dismayed that Surrey City council rejected the 91-unit “Harmony” apartment project proposed for 151A Street and 20th Avenue.
There is a desperate need for safe, affordable and inclusive rental housing for seniors, families, those with disabilities and essential workers in our community. This project directly addressed these needs, and was supported by city staff.
City staff concluded “that significant public benefit will be realized through the creation of 91 new affordable and inclusive housing units…and the benefits of the proposed improvements to the Semiahmoo Trail.” Staff also acknowledged the “substantial show of community support for the proposal, and recommended that council approve the project.
We are mystified. Why, in face of a robust consultation process, city staff endorsement, overwhelming community support, and the desperate need for local affordable and inclusive housing, would the mayor and five of eight councillors reject the proposal, with neither explanation nor rationale?
We believe that everyone is entitled to a safe home. This council has denied that right to 191 people on the wait-list for Harmony’s 91 units.
Jean Macdonald,chair, Peninsula United Church Council