New housing to help students focus on studies, not finances

Sep 06, 2019

Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training Media Release

Minister Mark Housing AnnouncementTERRACE – New, affordable, on-campus student housing is coming to Coast Mountain College's Terrace campus, with 108 new beds to replace outdated housing and 33 net new student beds.

"Students should be able to focus on acquiring the skills and training they need to join B.C.'s thriving economy, and not worry about finding a place to live," said Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training. "The new student homes are part of our government's commitment to address a call to action from students, and rural and Indigenous communities in B.C.'s northwest, to create more affordable housing closer to home and lift students up to success."

The announcement of two new student housing buildings was made by Mark, who was joined by students, staff and faculty during a visit to the campus.

Two new three-storey, 54-bed student housing buildings at Coast Mountain College will replace four obsolete buildings.

The project will consist of 33 net new beds, 71 replaced beds and four new suites for Elders or relatives for a total of 108 beds.

Improving student housing is a priority for the college, which serves 34 communities, including 21 Indigenous communities. This new housing project was designed with First Nations consultation.

Each new building will have accessible communal spaces, such as a student lounge, study space, lounge, Indigenous cultural space and a communal kitchen. All common areas will be fully accessible and barrier free.

The student housing will be more energy efficient, meeting the highest standards, consistent with the Province's long-term climate strategy, CleanBC.

The provincial government is investing $18.7 million for the $19.7-million project. The remainder of the funding will come from the college.

Construction is expected to start in summer 2020, with completion in fall 2021.


Jennifer Rice, MLA for North Coast –

“The student housing in Terrace has been in a state of disrepair since I was a Coast Mountain College student almost two decades ago. After two years in government, I’m proud to say we’re fixing this. We’re breaking down barriers by investing in students’ success.”

Ken Burt, president, Coast Mountain College –

“Students from rural and Indigenous communities will have a safe, comfortable and welcoming home away from home, making it easier for them to concentrate on their studies. We are thrilled to get started on this exciting new project and to welcome more students to Coast Mountain College.” 

Lenda Girard, Coast Mountain College Student Union organizer –

“For many students attending the Terrace campus, this is their first time living away from home. Each student staying in residence deserves safe, comfortable and healthy housing. Mental health and study capabilities drastically improve for students when they can sleep and live safely and comfortably. I'm excited to see how the new facilities will help Coast Mountain students.”

Quick Facts

  • Estimated rental rates for the new accommodation will be well below market standard at$550 for quad occupancy and $650 for triple occupancy.
  • The project is expected to generate 50 direct and 48 indirect jobs.
  • Between 2001 and 2017, 130 student beds were funded with less than $3 million by the B.C. government.
  • Since 2018, there has been a 1,065% increase in new student housing at the following locations: University of Victoria (782 total, with 620 net new), College of New Caledonia (12 beds), Thompson Rivers University (533), College of the Rockies (96), University of British Columbia Okanagan (220) and Coast Mountain College (108 beds, with 33 net new) for a total of 1,514 net new beds.
  • With an investment of $450 million, the Province will build about 5,000 new on-campus beds at public post-secondary schools throughout the province over the next six years.

Media Contacts

Tasha Schollen
Director of Communications
Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training

Sarah Zimmerman
Executive Director, Communications
Cell: 250-641-2206