$39M announced for YK Avens Pavilion seniors’ housing

A housing project for NWT seniors received a combined $38.8 million from the federal and territorial governments on Thursday.

In a news release, the federal government said it would provide $33.7 million for construction of the Avens Pavilion development in Yellowknife. The NWT government is to contribute $5.1 million for a kitchen and laundry addition.

Seniors care provider Avens, meanwhile, has permission from it members to take out a loan of up to $5.5 million to help fund the project.


The total cost of the Avens Pavilion project has yet to be announced.

At its annual general meeting last month, Avens shared plans for 92 one-bedroom and 10 two-bedroom units, including affordable housing options. At the moment, Avens has long-term care beds for 55 seniors and an additional 32 housing units.

“The Northwest Territories is ageing and as more people decide to retire here, the demand for suitable, affordable housing for seniors has far exceeded supply,” said Avens board chair Marion LaVigne in a news release.

“To assist northerners to age in place, we are proud to add another 100-plus housing units for seniors, and to offer a range of support services to assist both Avens residents and seniors in our community.”

Daryl Dolynny, Avens’ chief executive, said the Avens Pavilion would mark the territory’s largest affordable housing development to date.


The federal funding comes from a $13.2-billion National Housing Co-Investment Fund, which supports partnerships between governments, non-profits, and the private sector.

In the legislature on Wednesday, NWT housing minister Paulie Chinna said $60 million of that fund had been “carved off” for the NWT but none of it had yet been accessed.

Some NWT-based projects have, however, received money from the broader national co-investment fund rather than the NWT-specific portion.