Some days, getting out of bed on a cold, dark wintery morning and dreading the morning commute to work can be a drag. For some others, it’s hurry up and get the kids ready for early morning hockey practice or gymnastics before going to school. Sound familiar?
With our busy lives, do we stop to think about the dawn, the aurora? What is an aurora? It’s the glow that suggests the beginning or dawn of a new day. It can also represent our dreams and aspirations. We are fortunate to have a home, family, friends and careers.
Not everyone is so lucky. On November 24, 2016, StreetSide Developments: a Qualico company, participated in the grand opening of Aurora on the Park. This is a 25 unit, fully accessible building constructed specifically to support vulnerable and formerly homeless Calgarians. This is the dawn of their new day. They too have dreams and aspirations and Aurora on the Park will support them along the way to hopefully fulfill those dreams someday.
A place to call home for the vulnerable and formerly homeless
Aurora on the Park is a joint effort, spearheaded by the RESOLVE Campaign and the Calgary Homeless Foundation. The RESOLVE Campaign is part of the Calgary Homeless Foundation. Their goal is the ending homelessness in Calgary through practical and long-term solutions. This will be achieved by providing affordable and supported rental housing for 3000 vulnerable and homeless Calgarians.
StreetSide Developments and Qualico Developments, along with ten other local home builders, have joined together to address the lack of affordable and supported housing. They are working together on eight Calgary Homeless Foundation projects within RESOLVE. StreetSide and Qualico’s visionary gift to the RESOLVE campaign was $1,400,000 including the construction of Aurora on the Park. The project was also funded by the Province of Alberta and made possible through the generous donations by the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation, David and Leslie Bissett, Ryan and Joella Shoemaker, James Hardie Building Products, and True Exteriors Ltd.
Speaking at the grand opening, Glynn Hendry, Regional Vice President of Qualico Developments said, “Today we celebrate community and the opening of Aurora on the Park, a new affordable, fully accessible and supported home for 25 Calgarians who were formerly without a home. Every Calgarian deserves a place to call home and we are thrilled to have had the opportunity to be involved in this important initiative.”
Accessible and supported
The tenants of Aurora on the Park will be fully supported with the assistance of the Alpha House Society. Their new homes are designed to be wheelchair accessible and barrier free. Kitchens have open spaces under the sink and stove to allow for tenants pull up close, cabinets are open for easy access and bathrooms are completely handicapped accessible.
All the common areas are also fully accessible. “We designed it to promote tenant integration and community, through the use of common-area rooms and shared dining experiences with a common area kitchen,” said Richard Daley, vice president of multi-family developments with StreetSide Developments.
Mr. Daley also went on to explain the meaning behind Aurora on the Park’s logo. “The wave icon in the logo represents the peaks and valleys some of the tenants have gone through on their journey to finding this place they can now call home.”
To help celebrate the homecoming for the new tenants, StreetSide Developments has placed a commemorative blanket in each suite. Our hope is that everyone can have a place to call home. With Aurora on the Park, we are able to help 25 vulnerable and formerly homeless Calgarians to have a place of their own. Now they can wake to a new dawn and perhaps achieve some of their dreams and aspirations.