Four properties are being transferred to Habitat for Humanity NWT for development purposes, with the City of Yellowknife’s approval, but not before some opposition arose.

During city council’s discussion on the topic during the evening of March 28, Dave Brothers from Habitat for Humanity spoke of the significance of the Spence Road lots.

“The four lots that we’re requesting are very important to us,” he said. “It’s what we need to be able to have long-term success.”

RELATED REPORTING: Habitat for Humanity NWT makes case for city lots

Coun. Steve Payne proposed an amendment that the number of donated lots drop from four to two, due to the lack of available city lots currently.

“First, I want to say that I support Habitat for Humanity, 100 per cent,” said Payne. “I agree with what the organization stands for and what they do.

“The main reason right now why I’m presenting this amendment is the fact that we are so low on single-family home lots in the city. We have 11 available,” he explained. “To get rid of, to dispose of, I think it would be like 45 per cent of our variable lots at this time, especially with a bit of a housing crunch (in) Yellowknife, I think it’s a bit premature.”

Coun. Niels Konge was also in favour of the amendment, but it would ultimately be defeated with only Konge and Payne in support of it.

Council then proceeded with the original motion to reassign the four lots to Habitat, which passed unanimously.

As per an agreement that Habitat for Humanity has with the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, the deal is for two homes to be built per year over five years — 2021 to 2026 — one being constructed in the city and another in another Northern community.

One home was completed in the Yellowknife area as of last year, with the other being built in Dettah.

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