The Oak Bay United Church is proposing to provide approximately 50,000 square feet of their Granite Street property to build affordable housing for the community. In return, the church wants an income to cover their cost for the next 100 years. It is unclear whether the church will receive other compensation.
What is the OBUC’s land contribution worth? One way is to ask how much the church would get if it sold the land as housing lots. Assuming they could sell eight lots for $1 million, the value of the land would be $8 million.
If the present value of the payout to the church (including yearly income) is more than the value of the land, I suggest the church is acting contrary to the principals of a not-for-profit organization.
To address the issue of public confidence, and be fully transparent, the church and its partner BC Housing should tell the community what monetary benefits the church will receive.