City of Burnaby selects directors of new Burnaby Housing Authority

Last updated: July 2, 2024

The City of Burnaby has selected 10 directors to lead the Burnaby Housing Authority (BHA), a unique municipal corporation which will help accelerate the creation of non-market housing in Burnaby.

“We’re thrilled to have such a knowledgeable and passionate group of people serving as the inaugural directors of the Burnaby Housing Authority,” said Mayor Mike Hurley. “We understand the urgency to build more non-market housing quickly and I know these folks are ready to hit the ground running.” 

Based on feedback during public engagement, the BHA Board will be comprised of a majority of external directors (six), three members of Council and one City staff.

City Directors:

  • Mayor Mike Hurley 
  • Councillor Alison Gu
  • Councillor Daniel Tetrault 
  • Noreen Kassam (Deputy CAO/CFO) 

Independent Directors:

  • Aubrey Kelly, President + CEO, UBC Properties Trust
  • Ian Cullis, Director, Asset Management, BCNPHA
  • Lilian Kan, Director, Development Management, Colliers
  • Stephani Baker, Vice President Development and Communications, Team Rubicon
  • Andrew Tong, Managing Director, Integral Strategic Real Estate Ltd.
  • Michael Leroux, Partner at Richards Buell Sutton LLP

The Board will be tasked with finding office space, hiring a CEO and staff and begin exploring potential housing projects.

The BHA is an arms-length municipal corporation that will work collaboratively with housing providers and developers to increase housing diversity and affordable housing options. The BHA would help to streamline decision-making, accelerate housing projects and act as a centralized hub to develop and manage non-market housing for public benefit.

The creation and early activities of the BHA are supported, in part, by an allocation of funds from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). In December 2023, Burnaby received over $43 million from CMHC’s Housing Accelerator Fund to support seven initiatives to address increasing housing demand, including the BHA. 

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 to give more Canadians a place to call home.

“Last December, the federal government announced funding for the City of Burnaby through the Housing Accelerator Fund, to get more homes built, faster,” said The Honourable Terry Beech, Minister of Citizens’ Services and Member of Parliament for Burnaby North—Seymour on behalf of the Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities. “Today, we see how that funding is helping remove barriers to housing supply with the launch of the Burnaby Housing Authority. This is just one initiative among many that will help build new affordable housing projects for the people who call Burnaby home.” 

The BHA builds on the success of Burnaby’s progressive approach to housing, which includes a Tenant Assistance Policy that is one of the strongest in Canada, and a Rental Use Zoning Policy that is leading to a surge in new rental construction. The BHA is envisioned as another important step to developing the housing Burnaby needs, a direct approach to creating non-market housing options for Burnaby residents.

Establishing a Burnaby Housing Authority delivers on key actions in HOME: Burnaby’s Housing and Homeless Strategy and addresses multiple recommendations from the Mayor’s Task Force on Community Housing.

Learn More: Burnaby Housing Authority

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