Ontario Land Tribunal rules in favour of Guelph transitional housing plan

Ontario Construction News staff writer

The Ontario Land Tribunal (OLT) has ruled in favour of the County of Wellington and the City of Guelph’s plan to turn an existing county-owned property into a transitional housing building.

Planning for the 28-bedroom transitional housing building at 65 Delhi St. started in late 2020, received unanimous support from council and was appealed to the OLT in August 2021 – causing plans to be halted until the Sept. 16 decision was released.

“The county is pleased with today’s decision,” said David Anderson, social services committee chair. “The county and the city have worked hard to find innovative solutions to help the homeless in our communities.

“Today’s decision means we can continue to move forward with our plan to house 28 people needing a safe place to call home.”

The County of Wellington is the designated service manager for social services in both the City of Guelph and Wellington County.

The building is currently vacant and the proposed project will provide new housing for residents of Guelph-Wellington who are experiencing homelessness.

Historically, 65 Delhi St. has been used as a satellite facility for Guelph’s hospital and later as recreational space. The city sold the property to the County of Wellington for the housing project, conditional on rezoning.

The proposal does not include additions to the existing building. Proposed changes to the exterior are restricted to the addition of ramps to improve accessibility of the building and the addition of fire escapes to meet safety standards.

“This decision helps fill a critical gap in adult transitional housing opportunities in Guelph and will help elevate the significant pressure on the emergency shelter system. Most importantly, it will be instrumental in supporting the health and wellbeing of those currently experiencing homelessness.” said Luisa Artuso, social services administrator for the county.

“Both the county and the city would like to shift away from crisis emergency housing and move towards permanent housing solutions and homelessness prevention strategies.”


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