Under British Columbia’s Single Room Occupancy (SRO) Renewal Initiative, Vancouver’s historic Gastown Hotel has been renovated and officially reopened for business. The $143.3-million public-private initiative was established to help restore and maintain 13 provincially owned SRO hotels in the city’s Downtown Eastside for homeless individuals or those at risk of homelessness.
Located at 110 Water St., the Gastown Hotel is the first building in the SRO Renewal Initiative to be completed. Managed by Atira Property Management Inc., the hotel now includes 95 units, four of which have full-kitchen and bathroom facilities for couples. It also features a common kitchen, dining area, lounge, laundry room, administrative offices for support staff, a nurse’s room, and a sauna designed to treat belongings affected by bed bug infestations.
“The renovations at the Gastown Hotel are nothing short of miraculous,” says Janice Abbott, Executive Director and CEO of Atira Women’s Resource Society “The rejuvenated hotel not only provides our tenants with safe, affordable housing, it also has a common kitchen, laundry facilities, brand new washrooms and other amenity space that aids the health and development of an already robust community. In addition, there is a separate office and a clinic room, which allows us to provide some additional supports when tenants need it most.”
The remaining SRO hotels, which will also have restored facades, are expected to be completed by February 2016.
The Government of Canada has provided $29.1-million, through the P3 Canada Fund, to support B.C.’s SRO Renewal Initiative.