It's been almost 10 years since the Whistler Housing Authority added any new rental units to its inventory with the Beaver Flats project in Creekside. Strong interest is expected when the WHA unveils a selection of rental units at Cheakamus Crossing next week.
The building is being called Chiyamesh, after the Squamish Nation's word for "people of the wish weir," a reference to the nearby Cheakamus River. It includes 40 suites and 15 one-bedroom units, which are available for $775 per month and $975 per month respectively. That includes the price of heat, as the building is hooked up to the new system that pipes waste heat from the wastewater treatment plant to units at Cheakamus Crossing.
There is also a laundry facility in the building and some of the ground level units have an outside porch area.
Transit to the Cheakamus Crossing neighbourhood will start on June 26 with regular bus service after the Labour Day weekend.
The units will be available to rent Aug. 1, but the Whistler Housing Authority is hosting an open house on Monday, June 28 from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
WHA manager Marla Zucht says it's been difficult to get the private sector involved in building rental housing as part of development projects, and that Cheakamus Crossing - built to house Olympians and officials during the 2010 Games - provided a perfect opportunity.
"This is the first new project we've seen in almost a decade, so we're pretty excited about it," she said.
The units were priced below market rates, although Zucht said market prices are coming down.
"We track rental pricing every week in the newspapers and we're starting to see rental prices come down, but it's happening slowly," she said.
In order to rent at Chiyakmesh you must register with the WHA rental list and meet certain criteria. More information is available at www.whistlerhousing.ca.