The Resort Village of Candle Lake is home to over 1,100 permanent full-time residents. Almost another 1,100 individuals own property at Candle Lake. As with any population, as people age they seek out places where they can live most comfortably and with the supports they require.
The Candle Lake 55+ Housing Project is seeking ways to support its permanent residents by providing specialized, supported housing options that will allow aging residents to remain in Candle Lake longer.
Initial interest in a 55+ housing project
The idea of a housing complex for seniors was brought forward in Summer 2022 by several community members who came forward to Council with a request to see more housing options that could meet the needs of healthy, independent, older adults and seniors and which would allow them to stay in the community as they age without the demands and costs of owning a cottage property.
Steering Committee formed to pursue a 55+ housing project
The group formed a Steering Committee, which included community members and some members of Council. In October 2022, a community meeting was held to provide residents with an overview of the idea of a housing project. Background data on current housing, income, and population characteristics of the community was compiled. A survey was developed for people aged 55 and older, and a list of potential sites for a development was compiled. The group requested funding from the Resort Village to conduct a formal needs assessment to see if the idea was viable.
Confirming the demand for a 55+ housing project
The Housing Demands Needs Assessment, completed by Wallace Insights, found there is a very high desire for housing among older residents who wish to remain in Candle Lake as they age. One-third of those who participated in the research indicated they are considering a move within five years unless there are other housing options available for them. It also identified interest in attracting more health care services to the community so that care is available as close to home as possible.
Other relevant statistics include:
- 1,160 people currently live in the Resort Village year-round (Statistics Canada, 2021). Of equal note, Candle Lake has another 1,109+ private dwellings, not counted in the census. These second homes are not just vacation homes. A substantial number of these property owners will comprise the next surge of permanent residents, as many of these people invest in their second home, anticipating their future retirement here.
- In the last five years the permanent population has increased by 38%. The greatest permanent population growth is the retirement age demographic.
- People move here permanently to enjoy their retirement years. Currently 71% of the permanent population, approximately 825 of the 1,160 total population, are people over the age of 50.
First steps to develop a 55+ housing project
In early November 2023, the 55+ Housing Steering Committee met to finalize an Expression of Interest (EOI) to identify builder/developer(s) who are interested in the opportunity to build for resale, owner occupied or rental housing. Builder/Developer(s) identified through this process will be invited to submit a detailed proposal through a competitive Request for Proposal process. The successful proponent(s) will enter into a sale agreement with the Resort Village and performance clauses for delivery of the housing project will be included. The Resort Village may consider concessions including land rebate, servicing considerations, and/or tax incentives to the successful builder/developer(s).
For more information on the Candle Lake 55+ Housing Project please call (306) 929-2236.