Proposed Affordable Housing Plan at SSUC

Notes on a Proposed Affordable Housing Plan at Southminster-Steinhauer United Church  

  1. General The preliminary design is for a mixed use, affordable, net zero energy apartment building. There are currently 24 suites in total. The building is proposed to be four storeys, each with the same basic layout.  Each floor has six suites: 1 – 4 bedroom, 1 – 3 bedroom, 2 – 2 bedroom accessible units, and 2- 1 bedroom accessible units. Each suite on the upper floors will have its own balcony. Each floor except the main floor will have a common area adjacent to the stairs and elevator. The basement will house the main mechanical room and 19 parking stalls. The building is roughly 33,000 square feet plus the parking.
    • The attached drawings are quite preliminary. We still need to refine the suite layouts and may need to make adjustments to align the structure with the structure of the parking garage below.
    • The exterior treatments are very preliminary. We are working on several others. One of the ones shown uses the colour scheme from the church.
  1. Preliminary Consultation with the City of Edmonton. On January 23, Peter Amerongen met with the Kirk Bacon, the development officer for the project for the city. The full meeting report is attached. The major conclusions were as follows:
    • The site will need to be rezoned, most likely to DC-2 (Direct Control) zoning. We anticipated this. The process will take six months or more. The application is   reviewed extensively by the relevant city departments and must be voted on a City Council meeting.  Immediately after determining that this is a viable project for the Congregation and for Right at Home we will prepare and make the application for rezoning. During this period we will consult with the neighbourhood, continue with the detailed design and prepare the applications for the development and building permits.
    • The preliminary revue by the relevant departments –the Planning Department, the Fire Department, the Transportation department, and Waste Management was very encouraging. There were no surprises.
  2. The city zoning requires a minimum of 93 stalls – 35 for the apartment building and 58 for the church. There are already 90 stalls. With the 19 currently planned for under the apartment and the additional 5 surface stalls, the project will far exceed the minimum.
  3. Net Zero Energy. A net zero energy building is one that uses so little energy that over the course of the year all of the buildings energy needs for heating, cooling, hot water, and lighting and appliances can be met with renewable energy produced on the site. In this case the buildings energy needs will be entirely met by the photovoltaic array on the roof. This brave prediction is based on experience with similar buildings and a very simple analysis using that experience. This analysis indicates there may be enough energy produced by the solar array on the roof to offset some of the electricity use in the church. (The energy required for underground parking was not included in the preliminary analysis).  Detailed energy modeling will be one of the immediate next steps in the design process.
  4. Immediate next steps:
    • Southminster-Steinhauer United Church to decide if it is interested in pursuing the project.
    • Peter Amerongen will prepare a detailed budget so that Right at Home can determine the feasibility from its perspective.
    • Southminster-Steinhauer United Church and Right at Home to enter into an agreement regarding the land.
    • Right at Home to apply for rezoning and engage the neighbourhood.
    • Continue with the design:
      • Engage a Civil Engineer
      • Engage an Architect

Find preliminary site plan images here, and the Pre-Application Meeting Record here.