New community services centre opens in the Downtown Eastside
The new Evelyne Saller Community Centre, located at 404 Alexander Street, officially opens next month, and will provide important health and social support services for thousands of low-income adults.
The previous centre was the largest food provider in the Downtown Eastside (DTES), serving over 850 low cost meals a day. It also provided 22,000 showers and 19,000 loads of laundry annually along with social and recreational programs. The brand new centre will also offer cooling respite area and a temporary emergency weather response shelter during winter. Evelyne Saller Centre is operated by the City of Vancouver with funding provided by the City and BC Housing.
Roddan Lodge, located above the new Evelyne Saller Centre at 124 Dunlevy Avenue, has been open since February and includes a mix of 213 units comprised of studio, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom homes for low and moderate-income families, couples, persons with a disability, and singles. More than two-thirds of the homes are rented at the provincial shelter rate, providing deeply affordable housing for over 140 residents.
Built to the highest standards to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, the new building uses electric heat pump systems to provide heating, cooling, and hot water.
The 11-storey LEED Platinum certified building includes:
- Amenity spaces such as a TV lounge
- Four outdoor and rooftop gardens
- A playground area for children
- A library
- A music room and a full kitchen with lounge for communal gatherings
The building was designed by dys Architects and constructed by Smith Bothers & Wilson.
The building was made possible through a land contribution from the City of Vancouver valued at $4 million, a capital contribution from the City of $53.6 million, and a capital grant of $4.8 million from BC Housing’s Investment in Housing Innovation fund. The Government of Canada provided federal funding through the Seed program, which is designed to support costs for completing pre-development activities related to the construction of new affordable housing across Canada.