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N.S. housing complex receives second round of eviction notices

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Tenants from a housing complex in Dartmouth, N.S., have received an eviction notice saying a few of the buildings will be demolished as part of the second phase of redevelopment in the area.

The plans for redevelopment of the Ocean Breeze Village community has been known to tenants for three years. However, receiving the letters has made it feel more real.

“This is the second round of community updates, and they’ve upped the demolition date for Phase 3 so they thought they had six months before they need to consider their moving, but now they have do this now,” said Celine Porcheron, a tenant living in one of the units.

The complex located near the Mackay Bridge has some of the lowest rent in the city, and people in the community worry they won’t be able to find that anywhere else.

“There have been people living here for over 25 years. I pay $1,000 for a three-bedroom. They’re pushing us out and putting up something we would never be able to afford,” said Porcheran.

She can’t afford market-price rentals in the city and housing outside the peninsula is not affordable for her either.

“We’re not old but we’re not young and I’d like to stay in this beautiful location for a longer [time], but I won’t get to because there’s nowhere for me to go.”

The rental office for the Ocean Breeze Village in Dartmouth, N.S., is seen on June 11, 2024. (Hafsa Arif/CTV Atlantic)Porcheron said she knows a number of residents who have been forced to move and they have not found affordable options like units in Ocean Breeze Village.

The property is owned by Basin Heights Community Partnership LP which includes Cresco, Fares & CO. Development, and T & H Group Developments, and they have plans to redevelop and increase housing density.

Currently the project is at Phase 3 which includes high-rises and townhouses. Other parts of the area can see redevelopment take years.

The plan has three phases of redevelopment. During phase 2, residents received either an exit package or offered temporary residence at a nearby complex.

The redevelopment plans for Ocean Breeze Village in Dartmouth, N.S. (Courtesy: Basin Heights Community Partnership LP)“To be honest, it’s a grim outlook. There’s tons and tons of buildings underway right now but there’s no guarantee that any of them are going to be affordable,” said Nova Scotia NDP MLA, Susan LeBlanc.

“We need housing and right now we don’t have enough.”

Julie Daye, a single mother of two who lives in one of the units, is extremely nervous by the uncertainty the future holds. She said she has looked at other places but has not seen anything that would work for her and her kids.

“When you can’t afford a three-bedroom apartment on a single parent income, what do you do?” She asked tearfully.

Daye said many of her kids’ classmates are gone, and that is one of the ways she knows that the community is slowly disappearing. She fears what will happen if she cannot find the right accommodations.

In statement to CTV News, Nova Scotia’s Department of Municipal Affairs said it is aware of the development and the owner’s plans.

“We’ve had several discussions with the property owners about our programs and innovative solutions the developer can use to maintain affordability as part of the redevelopment plans. This is a privately owned property, and the province is not involved in their development decisions. At this time, no applications have been received for our programs,” read the statement.

For more Nova Scotia news visit our dedicated provincial page.

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