Vancouver – Building diverse and affordable housing at 1015 East Hastings

BC Housing and the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society (VAFCS) are partnering on a proposed housing project for people of all ages who are struggling to find a place to call home. The project is being planned for the City-owned vacant lot at 1015 East Hastings, on the territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh nations, and would include:

  • 80 permanent shelter beds for people and families experiencing homelessness, operated by VAFCS;
  • 25 homes with supports for people who are ready to move from the shelter to more independent living;
  • 85 new affordable rental homes for low-income families and individuals; and
  • 53 new market rental homes.

Please share your Feedback and Questions

1015E East Hastings Open House Panels March 2020

Open these display boards to learn more about the proposed project. You can send feedback and design input to communityrelations@bchousing.org or use the Q&A tool below to submit questions. We welcome your feedback and it will be shared with the project team and partners to inform project planning.

A rezoning application has been submitted to the City of Vancouver for consideration. The City is collecting feedback on the rezoning application between July 13 and August 2, 2020. You can view the application documents, send comments, ask questions, and take a virtual tour of the site at https://shapeyourcity.ca/1015-e-hastings

map of 1015 east hastings

Creating safe spaces for all

Designed to make a positive contribution to the community, the project will create safe spaces where all people can come together to feel accepted and valued. It will reflect the values of inclusiveness and belonging at the heart of the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society and help provide people with the skills and support they need to transition from shelter to independent living.

Enriching the local community

Through architecture, design, and programming, the building will celebrate the area’s rich and vibrant Indigenous history and traditions. It will honour and respect the elders, adults, youth and families that live in the area. Community events and gatherings hosted at the building will help neighbours connect to each other and people from all cultural backgrounds will be invited to express and share their culture.

This project is an innovative partnership of BC Housing and the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society. The project partners are committed to working with the community to develop a project that creates lasting benefits including a more vibrant streetscape, creative community partnerships, art and cultural events and a communal gathering space.

BC Housing and the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society (VAFCS) are partnering on a proposed housing project for people of all ages who are struggling to find a place to call home. The project is being planned for the City-owned vacant lot at 1015 East Hastings, on the territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh nations, and would include:

  • 80 permanent shelter beds for people and families experiencing homelessness, operated by VAFCS;
  • 25 homes with supports for people who are ready to move from the shelter to more independent living;
  • 85 new affordable rental homes for low-income families and individuals; and
  • 53 new market rental homes.

Please share your Feedback and Questions

1015E East Hastings Open House Panels March 2020

Open these display boards to learn more about the proposed project. You can send feedback and design input to communityrelations@bchousing.org or use the Q&A tool below to submit questions. We welcome your feedback and it will be shared with the project team and partners to inform project planning.

A rezoning application has been submitted to the City of Vancouver for consideration. The City is collecting feedback on the rezoning application between July 13 and August 2, 2020. You can view the application documents, send comments, ask questions, and take a virtual tour of the site at https://shapeyourcity.ca/1015-e-hastings

map of 1015 east hastings

Creating safe spaces for all

Designed to make a positive contribution to the community, the project will create safe spaces where all people can come together to feel accepted and valued. It will reflect the values of inclusiveness and belonging at the heart of the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society and help provide people with the skills and support they need to transition from shelter to independent living.

Enriching the local community

Through architecture, design, and programming, the building will celebrate the area’s rich and vibrant Indigenous history and traditions. It will honour and respect the elders, adults, youth and families that live in the area. Community events and gatherings hosted at the building will help neighbours connect to each other and people from all cultural backgrounds will be invited to express and share their culture.

This project is an innovative partnership of BC Housing and the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society. The project partners are committed to working with the community to develop a project that creates lasting benefits including a more vibrant streetscape, creative community partnerships, art and cultural events and a communal gathering space.

Q&A

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  • Why can I not move my scattered subsidy to Penticton?

    Help asked about 1 month ago

    The demand for subsidized housing far exceeds the available supply. BC Housing places applicants based on the urgency of their housing need, and based on the priority list below:   

    • Applicants facing a severe risk to health and/or safety, such as currently being homeless or living in a homeless shelter. 
    • Applicants with serious health/medical/social needs, such as risk of homelessness, fleeing domestic abuse, living in severely inadequate housing, or transitioning to a more independent living situation. 
    • Applicants whose housing need is moderate compared with the two previous categories, such as living in temporary or inadequate accommodation. 
    • Applicants with a specialized housing need or low housing need, such as living in marginally crowded housing. 
    • Applicants for the low end market units found in some subsidized buildings.

      Priority for public housing units managed by BC Housing is provided to people with the greatest need in a particular community.  You can request an update to your application status and ensure that it is active in BC’s Housing Registry. You will have to make a new application in order to be considered for housing in Penticton. To update your status:  


    • By phone: Call the Housing Registry Inquiry Line at 604-433-2218, or 1-800-257-7756 outside the Lower Mainland. 
    • By fax: Fax a letter with your name, file number, previous information, and new information to The Housing Registry at 604-439-4729. 
    • By mail: Mail a letter with your name, file number, previous information, and new information to The Housing Registry at:

      BC Housing Home Office, 101-4555 Kingsway, Burnaby, BC  V5H 4V8.  Office hours: 8:30am to 4:30pm.
    • In person: Letters can also be dropped off at the above BC Housing office.


    If you are housed directly with a non-profit or co-operative housing provider that manages their own applicant lists, ask them how you can keep your file up to date and how often they want you to contact them. 

  • Hello, Can you please provide us local operating examples or analogues of the proposed "welcome, safe shelter beds"? Without a clear reference, it is easy to imagine that the street frontage on 1015 Hastings St will look similar to what is presently the conditions on sections of the 300 block of Alexander St or 100 Block E Hastings (large amounts of waste/rubbish abandoned on street and tremendous amounts of loitering & police/first responder presence). While I can appreciate an idyllic blended housing offer that meets the needs of all populations, I am concerns about what potentially could be the realities of a shelter condition that takes dominance over Hastings St and eradicates the street safety for the other local residents and visitors. I too, feel compelled to highlight the community school located very close to this site and hope that this site truly is filled with families that would take advantage of this close proximity of infrastructure as opposed to those who will could threaten the safety and security of this community school. I believe that the city, BC Housing and the VAFCS are acting with good intentions, however providing clear examples of these intentions translating in to successes would be helpful in reassuring the public of this plan. An additional note to the overall planning is that it is clear that the light industrial zoning on Hastings St is a miss. Without small retail spaces being offered, this section of the street continues to belong to no real community group, and the few existing business struggle to attract customers due to their isolation. A clear example is this struggling retail/F&B at the base of Strathcona Village by Wall/GBL Architects. With neighbours on the street front that are operating as private office space, there is no incentive for guests to frequent this section of the street as the street and business frontage itself offers no character. Furthermore, the complete lack of street fixtures and landscaping (as is common throughout our beautiful city) are completely absent here. Although I presume that this has something to do with the nature of this being on an overpass, the street experience sends the wrong message: that this section of street is an afterthought and/or doesn't warrant the same level of standards or treatment as the rest of the city. This oversight needs to be addressed in the Kiwassa community plan and resolved prior to allowing the remaining developments from Campbell to Clark Dr to move forward.

    Rachel asked 5 months ago

    The shelter program would support people on their journey to wellness and stability in a drug- and alcohol-free environment. The shelter program would be run by the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society (VAFCS), which has a policy of zero drug and alcohol use on site. VAFCS has been operating the shelter at 201 Central Street since 2009, and has the skills and expertise to manage this shelter safely and responsibly. Shelter guests would have their beds for up to 90 days and during this time they would be able to connect to programs and services to support their health and wellness. The shelter program is one component of an overall project; the overall project would help keep the neighbourhood affordable and diverse by providing a range of housing options for people and families, including about 85 new, affordable rental homes and transform a vacant commercial lot into a safe and welcoming space where people can come together to feel accepted and valued.

    There will be staff on-site 24/7. People will be supported on their journey to wellness and stability through safe accommodation, healthy meals and on-site supports to ensure shelter guests are well-cared for, including:

    • on-site training, education, health and wellness services and gathering space.
    • Assessment to ensure each person is matched with the right level of support services they need to remain housed and live a healthy, stable life.

    This site was identified in 2016 through the City of Vancouver response to Metro Vancouver Aboriginal Executive Council’s (MVAEC) Aboriginal Health and Wellness Strategy. Visit https://council.vancouver.ca/20160119/regu20160119ag.htm for further information from the January 19, 2016 Council meeting (Item 2.) This proposed project is also aligned with the Downtown Eastside Plan intentions for the Hastings Street and Kiwassa area - add new residential uses, increase social housing, and add locally-serving retail and services.

    The proposal includes social enterprise space that would be operated by VAFCS on the ground floor. A Social Enterprise is a business owned by a non-profit organization to produce and / or sell goods and services. Social Enterprises generate income and serve a social, cultural, and/or environmental purpose. For example, VAFCS currently operates the Klatawa Bike Shop which is a community focused DIY bike shop that provides bike mechanic training to indigenous people in Vancouver; offers full service repairs; a stocked inventory of refurbished bikes as well as new and used bike parts.

    Finally, the proposed landscape plan can be found on the project website. The design team is working closely with the VAFCS to establish a set of values and a vision for this project. The design will evolve in the next phases to create a place that celebrates Indigenous culture and is welcoming to all.

  • I'm delighted to welcome this development into our neighbourhood and applaud the partnerships making this project happen. I am eager to welcome the children into my son's school, to meet new neighbours and to celebrate new homes for existing neighbours. This is an excellent use of this empty site: providing critical housing and community space with a crucial focus on lifting up our Indigenous community. Kudos.

    Sarah Neault asked 5 months ago

    Thank you for your words of support of our proposal. The design team is looking at opportunities for common areas throughout the buildings.The vision is for a safe and welcoming place where all people can come together to feel accepted and valued.

  • It's really uplifting to see project such as these in preparation to improve the devastating situation of fellow citizens in the downtown east side. As a lot of the problems have an indigenous cultural background, it's so important to create room for cultural activities, actively value and support indigenous culture. And even for people with other ethnic backgrounds, the kindness, close and artistic connection to local nature and culturally founded approach to sustainability are resources that all of Vancouver really needs to have more opportunity to experience. Looking at the renderings I wonder, if small balcony spaces, where you can only spend time alone, is the right choice to bring out those strengths? Maybe investing resources rather in shared in- and outdoor spaces that support community might help us all more? I hope that the building will succeed in excuding indigenous warmth and welcome. At the moment it still seems too generic. Could the massing include community outdoor spaces as part of the highrise concept on the higher levels?

    Claudia asked 5 months ago

    Thank you for your words of support of our proposal. The design team is looking at opportunities for common areas throughout the buildings.The vision is for a safe and welcoming place where all people can come together to feel accepted and valued.

  • What type of employment opportunities would be within walking distance for people wishing to transition from shelter to "affordable" housing? Where will the children go to school? This area seems a poor choice for family housing due to the heavily industrial environment. Are the children going to grow up appreciating the sounds of diesel engines, box cars shunting and the smell of industrial rendering and concrete? Will this site include a plan to help low income families transport their children to healthy natural environments to learn in?

    Roger asked 6 months ago

    Thank you for your comments about the proposed housing at 1015 East Hastings Street. This project is being designed to make a positive contribution to the community and enrich the local neighbourhood. 

    The area around the site is currently in transition, with a mix of industrial, commercial and residential uses. There are amenities for children and families within a few blocks including elementary schools, Ray Cam Community Centre, the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre and child care centres. The housing would be located on a major transit line and people who would live at 1015 East Hastings would access employment using the same variety of methods as every other resident of the area.

    This site was identified in 2016 through the City of Vancouver response to Metro Vancouver Aboriginal Executive Council’s (MVAEC) Aboriginal Health and Wellness Strategy. Visit https://council.vancouver.ca/20160119/regu20160119ag.htm for further information from the January 19, 2016 Council meeting (Item 2.) This proposed project is also aligned with theDowntown Eastside Planintentions for the Hastings Street and Kiwassa area to add new residential uses, increase social housing, and add locally-serving retail and services. Local business owners may also be looking for new hires as the area develops and flourishes.

  • I love this proposal and think that those that come to use the services will have a really life changing experience through the Aboriginal Friendship Centre. This proposal addresses multiple barriers to housing and mental health supports and I am really encouraged at the diversity of people that will qualify for these services. The Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre offers some valuable resources to the community, specifically Aboriginal community members who may not have access to culture and tradition while in Vancouver. It is so necessary for ones well being. Please let me know how I can show support for this proposal?

    Allana Mennie asked 6 months ago

    Thank you for your words of support. A rezoning application for 1015 East Hastings is now with the City of Vancouver. We welcome support at future opportunities for feedback, such as the City-led open house, public hearing and input period that will be held at dates TBC. We will update this page as soon as further details are available.

  • In these comments you have mentioned that this will be an environment that promotes rehabilitation towards a drug and alcohol free lifestyle. What efforts will be put in place to monitor this ? To support this goal? The building is being built at the heart of a growing brewery district and it will be in an area where drug use happens quite liberally in public spaces. How is this thought to be a good influence for anyone attempting to achieve sobriety?

    Alex asked 6 months ago

    The shelter program would support people on their journey to wellness and stability in a drug- and alcohol-free environment. The shelter program would be run by the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society (VAFCS), which has a policy of zero drug and alcohol use on site. VAFCS has been operating the shelter at 201 Central Street since 2009, and has the skills and expertise to manage this shelter safely and responsibly. Shelter guests would have their beds for up to 90 days and during this time they would be able to connect to programs and services to support their health and wellness. The shelter program is one component of an overall project; the overall project would help keep the neighbourhood affordable and diverse by providing a range of housing options for people and families, including about 85 new, affordable rental homes and transform a vacant commercial lot into a safe and welcoming space where people can come together to feel accepted and valued.

    There will be staff on-site 24/7. People will be supported on their journey to wellness and stability through safe accommodation, healthy meals and on-site supports to ensure shelter guests are well-cared for, including:

    • on-site training, education, health and wellness services and gathering space.
    • Assessment to ensure each person is matched with the right level of support services they need to remain housed and live a healthy, stable life.

    This site was identified in 2016 through the City of Vancouver response to Metro Vancouver Aboriginal Executive Council’s (MVAEC) Aboriginal Health and Wellness Strategy. Visit https://council.vancouver.ca/20160119/regu20160119ag.htmfor further information from the January 19, 2016 Council meeting (Item 2.) This proposed project is also aligned with theDowntown Eastside Planintentions for the Hastings Street and Kiwassa area - add new residential uses, increase social housing, and add locally-serving retail and services.

  • How much with rental homes be? Both the "low income" portion, and "market rental". How do I get put on the list to see if I qualify?

    Stephen asked 7 months ago

    Thank you for your interest in the proposed project at 1015 East Hastings. It is in a preliminary stage of review, and if approved through the City of Vancouver, we anticipate the building would be opening in 2023. More information about the affordable rental housing and market rental housing proposed for this site will be available at a future date.

    Please visit the BC Housing Program Finder to learn about which programs you may be eligible for: https://programfinder.bchousing.org/programfinder/faces/start

    To discuss housing options, please contact BC Housing Applicant Services: 1-800-257-7756 (Toll-free.)

  • How can I apply online

    asked 7 months ago

    Thank you for your interest in the proposed project at 1015 East Hastings, which would include:

    • 80 permanent shelter beds for people and families experiencing homelessness;
    • 25 homes with supports for people who are ready to move from the shelter to more independent living;
    • 85 new affordable rental homes for low-income families and individuals; and
    • 53 new market rental homes.


    This proposal is in a preliminary stage of review, and if approved through the City of Vancouver, we anticipate the building would be opening in 2023.

    Please visit the BC Housing Program Finder to learn about which programs you may be eligible for: https://programfinder.bchousing.org/programfinder/faces/start

    To discuss housing options, please contact BC Housing Applicant Services: 1-800-257-7756 (Toll-free.)

  • If you are so worried about enriching the local community why don’t you build a public swimming pool and gym instead of this? Building a halfway house for the drug addicted and alcoholic will definitely not help enrich this area...

    Sophie asked 7 months ago

    BC Housing and the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society are committed to designing a project that will make a positive contribution to the community. It is not a proposal for a halfway house. It would provide a range of housing for people of all ages and walks of life who are struggling to find a place to call home. The project would transform a vacant commercial lot into a safe and welcoming place where all people can come together to feel accepted and valued. It will include a shelter space, housing with support services, affordable rental and market rental homes. 

    This project is aligned with the Downtown Eastside Plan for the Hastings Street and Kiwassa area to help keep the neighbourhood affordable and diverse by providing a range of housing options for people and families and add locally-serving retail and services. 

    It is not appropriate or accurate to associate drug use, crime or mental health issues with people experiencing homelessness. They are not a homogenous group, and have had different pathways into homelessness, including a lack of adequate income, access to affordable housing and medical services, experiences of discrimination, traumatic events and personal crisis, physical health problems or disabilities and mental health concerns.