Housing NWT reduces reliance on leased units in public housing through Yellowknife’s Nordic Arms apartment building

News Releases

Yellowknife — October 6, 2023

Housing Northwest Territories (Housing NWT) is pleased to announce that tenants have started moving into the Nordic Arms apartment building in Yellowknife, with all tenants scheduled to move in by October 2023.

Housing NWT is taking meaningful steps to expand its portfolio of owned public housing units to increase the wellbeing of individuals and communities by providing fair access to quality housing supports for those who need it most.

Housing NWT assumed full ownership of Nordic Arms in March 2022. Ownership of this building allows Housing NWT to have more direct control over the units while ensuring public funds stay in the territory.

Between March 2022 and May 2023, Housing NWT conducted significant repairs and renovations to the building, hiring only local contractors. Project costs were approximately $1.3 million and included a range of building upgrades and improvements, including new sprinklers, fire panels, electrical distribution upgrades, and flooring replacements. Approximately $300,000 of this work was funded through a contribution from Finance Canada.

Housing NWT is committed to supporting economic prosperity and employment for NWT residents through investments like the renovation of Nordic Arms. It is a priority of ours to ensure that public funds maximize economic benefits for Northerners and support Northern businesses.

The purchase of Nordic Arms does not represent an overall increase to the number of public housing units in Yellowknife. Instead, a corresponding increase of private market rental units will become available as a result.

With assistance from the Canada Housing Benefit, Housing NWT is hopeful that residents in need of affordable housing can benefit from these additional units becoming available.

Previously a market rental building, two of Nordic Arms’ 24 units will remain market units under Housing NWT. The remaining 22 are designated for public housing.

Housing NWT plans to continue operating this building as a mixed-use public and market facility. As vacancies naturally come up, all units may eventually be used for public housing, with the local housing authority allocating tenants based on need.

Housing NWT’s mission is to reduce core housing needs and provide housing supports for residents who need it most. By acquiring Nordic Arms and opening it up to public housing tenants, Housing NWT is accomplishing this objective while reducing our reliance on southern landlords.

Quote(s)

“Housing NWT has worked diligently to increase the stock of quality, energy-efficient, and affordable housing. This government has taken meaningful steps to expand the Housing portfolio of owned public housing units. With the announcement of the Nordic Arms apartment building, Housing NWT is committed and now we are witnessing great progress. This commitment speaks to Housing NWT’s commitment to innovative and sustainable.

- Paulie Chinna, Minister Responsible for Housing NWT

Quick Facts

  • In March 2022, Housing NWT acquired the Nordic Arms apartment building from Yellowknife Education District No. 1 (YK1).
  • Project costs were approximately $1.3 million and included a range of safety and accessibility upgrades.
  • All tenants are expected to move in by October 2023.
  • This acquisition has increased Housing NWT’s number of owned public housing units in Yellowknife, but the overall number of available public housing units will not increase as Housing NWT plans to reduce the corresponding number of leased units in the city.
  • Housing NWT will operate this building as a mixed-use facility accommodating both existing market tenants and new public housing tenants.

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For media requests, please contact:

Jeanne_Yurris@gov.nt.ca

A/Manager, Communications 

Housing NWT

Government of the Northwest Territories

jeanne_yurris@gov.nt.ca