Ontario Construction News staff writer
The federal government has reached an agreement with the City of Vaughan to fast-track construction of more than 1,700 new housing units.
More than $59 million will be provided through the national housing accelerator fund, a $4-billion program announced in the spring 2022 federal budget, for high-density development near public transit, prioritize building apartments and affordable housing. Funding will also be used to fix outdated permitting systems and Vaughan will amend a zoning bylaw to allow up to four residential units to be built on one lot.
“The status quo on home building in this country just isn’t working. We need more apartments, affordable housing, homes within walking distance of public transit – and we need to do it faster,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said at a news conference in Vaughan last week. “That’s what today’s announcement in Vaughan is all about.
“We’re going to keep working with local governments on their innovative approaches to building more homes, faster.”
Housing Minister Sean Fraser said the city estimates 44,000 new homes could be unlocked over the next 10 years because of measures that the municipal government must implement to qualify for funding.
Local governments are encouraged to “think big and be bold” in their approaches, which could include accelerating project timelines, allowing increased housing density, and encouraging affordable housing units.
Last month, the city of London was the first in Canada to sign a deal under the national housing accelerator fund.
“With federal funding and federal leadership, we are changing how cities let housing get built in their communities,” Fraser said. “Today’s announcement will help create thousands of new homes for those who call Vaughan home.
“By working with cities, mayors, and all levels of government, we are helping to get more homes built for Canadians at prices they can afford.”
Local governments are encouraged to think big and be bold in their approaches, which could include accelerating project timelines, allowing increased housing density, and encouraging affordable housing units.