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Additional student housing for Okanagan College breaks ground today

It’s the first on-campus student housing to be added in more than 30 years.

Student housing spaces at Okanagan College’s Kelowna campus are set to more than double as construction breaks ground this afternoon.

An application for a development permit for the proposed student housing was submitted back in April to the Kelowna City Council.

On May 30th, Council voted in favour of the staff's recommendation for the six-storey, 216-unit building located on K.L.O Road near the existing Skaha residence.

This is just one of three student-housing projects set to happen in the Okanagan, as the province is investing $66.5 million into the accommodations.

Construction will start later this year on the first on-campus student housing at the college’s Vernon and Salmon Arm campuses.

</who>Photo credit: Okanagan College

“Having a stable and affordable place to live is critical to the success of learners,” said Neil Fassina, president, of Okanagan College.

“Adding housing at three Okanagan College campuses will foster more inclusive and equitable access to education that will transform the lives of students.”

The new housing will increase on-campus accommodations in Kelowna by 216 beds for a total of 360 beds in addition to 100 beds in Vernon and 60 beds in Salmon Arm.

“Over the past two years, living in student housing has helped me to exceed my academic expectations by creating a sense of community that I never knew I needed,” said Connor McGuinness, a student at the Okanagan College Kelowna campus.

“The unwavering support I've received from my fellow residents and student housing staff has given me the confidence to tackle the many challenges that have come my way.”

Construction on the Kelowna buildings is expected to be completed in winter 2023.

The Vernon project is anticipated to start later this summer and be completed in early 2024, while the Salmon Arm project is anticipated to start in fall 2022 and be completed in spring 2024.

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