Helping build more homes faster in Kelowna

October 25, 2023

News Release

With federal funding, and federal leadership we are changing how cities let housing get built in their communities. With a greater focus on higher density housing, student housing, homes near transit and affordable housing we are going to get more homes built for Canadians at prices they can afford.

Today, the Government of Canada and the City of Kelowna announced that they have reached an agreement to fast track an additional 950 housing units over the next three years. This work will help create a potential for up to 20,000 additional homes over the next decade.

The agreement, under the Housing Accelerator Fund (HAF) will provide over $31.5 million to eliminate barriers to building the housing we need, faster. It will allow for higher density development along rapid transit corridors, make city-owned lands available for affordable housing development in partnership with non-profits, and expand the use of technology to streamline building permit applications. Kelowna has been a leader in infill housing and is committed to expanding as-of-right zoning for more infill housing in its core. These initiatives are going to significantly improve access to housing in Kelowna.

The Housing Accelerator Fund is helping cut red tape and fast track at least 100,000 new homes for people in towns, cities, and Indigenous communities across Canada. It asks for innovative action plans from local governments, and once approved, provides upfront funding to ensure the timely building of new homes, as well as additional funds upon delivering results. Local governments are encouraged to think big and be bold in their approaches, which could include accelerating project timelines, allowing increased housing density, and encouraging affordable housing units.

The Government of Canada is making life more affordable for Canadians – and housing is key to our work.  We will continue to work with provincial, territorial, and municipal governments, as well as Indigenous partners, to keep building more homes for Canadians, faster.


“Today’s announcement will helpfast track over 950 homes inthe next three years and up to 20,000 homes over the next decade in Kelowna. By working with cities, mayors, and all levels of government we are helping to get more homes built for Canadians at prices they can afford.”

— The Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities

“Everyone deserves a place to call home, that’s why increasing diverse, attainable, and affordable housing options is one of Council’s top priorities. We are grateful for the Government of Canada’s significant investment that will further advance Kelowna’s innovation and commitment to accelerate housing for our rapidly growing community. The Housing Accelerator Fund is key to propelling us forward to meet the needs of today and into the future.” 

— Tom Dyas, Mayor of the City of Kelowna

Quick Facts:

  • Today’s announcement was made by the Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities, alongside Tom Dyas, Mayor of the City of Kelowna.
  • Beginning in 2016, the City of Kelowna began a progressive approach to infill housing. Through that work, over 800 parcels in specified urban areas were permitted to develop up to four residential units on one lot.
  • Through expansion of their Infill Options Program, the City of Kelowna has committed to pre-zoning an expanded area of the city’s core area to permit infill housing as-of-right to reduce barriers to housing construction.
  • Federal HAF funding is subject to conditions outlined in the agreement, including Kelowna City Council’s approval of pre-zoning measures.
  • Other initiatives by the City of Kelowna include:
    • Incentivizing Private Sector Housing Development
    • Transit Supportive Corridor Planning
    • Using City-Owned Land for Affordable Housing
    • Establishing New Housing Partnerships and Affordable Housing Delivery
    • Infrastructure Planning to Unlock Housing
    • Leveraging New Technology to Improve Processing and Data Management
  • Launched in March 2023, the Housing Accelerator Fund (HAF) is a $4 billion initiative from the Government of Canada that will run until 2026-27. The HAF is part of Canada’s National Housing Strategy (NHS), an $82+ billion plan that has already committed to the creation and repair of over 400,000 units. Progress on programs and initiatives under the NHS are updated quarterly at The Housing Funding Initiatives Map shows affordable housing projects that have been developed through the NHS.
  • Since the creation of the NHS, the Government of Canada has committed over $36.82 billion to support the creation of over 113,467 units and the repair of over 126,011 units. These measures prioritize those in greatest need, including seniors, Indigenous Peoples, people experiencing or at risk of homelessness, and women and children fleeing violence.

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