The work of the emergent Bowen Island Housing Corporation (BIHC) has been underway under Council’s direction since 2007, carried out by the Affordable Housing Working Group (AHWG) acting as an interim municipal housing organization.
Significant milestones include:
- The creation of a price-restricted affordable housing for purchase program in 2008, and
- The development of the organizational framework and operating model for a small, nimble municipal corporation to facilitate the development of diverse and affordable housing choices for residents, which was accepted by Council in 2012.
Given the predominance of single-family dwellings on Bowen Island, there are very few options for households seeking to downsize, for the elderly, for young families, for artists, and for the staff of island businesses. The BIHC will work with community partners to identify opportunities where the needed forms of housing can be produced and facilitate the process.
The formation of the BIHC, authorized by Council in 2012 following acceptance of the recommendations in the AHWG’s final report, represents the culmination of a decade of grassroots and community work to raise awareness of the impact of rising housing costs on Bowen’s diverse community, and to introduce tools and strategies for diversifying the mix of housing options available to residents.
The story of the community-based work leading to the formation of the municipal Bowen Island Housing Corporation can be found on the legacy website of the Affordable Housing Working Group.