Simcoe County decides bigger is better for Barrie affordable housing development

Ontario Construction News staff writer

Simcoe County last week voted to approve a redevelopment plan in the City of Barrie, increasing the number of residential units to 215 from the original plan for 176 to 215.

The two towers, to be built on the former site of the OPP station will be nine- and 11-storeys and the expected cost of the project is $217 million, up from the earlier $186 million budget.

Site preparation will begin in early 2024, with an estimated completion date in 2026-2027.

“County Council recognizes the importance of creating more affordable rental spaces throughout our communities,” said Warden Basil Clarke. “Council approved the original vision for this site earlier this year, but asked staff to bring back additional options to further utilize this opportunity.

“Council supported expanding the build as we continue to invest in strategies that build up our communities, through responsible and impactful solutions to address the housing crisis.”

The mixed-use project will include a variety of rent-geared-to-income, affordable and market rental units and numerous community services, including an Ontario Works office and programming space. There may also be a daycare, medical offices and other amenities built into the 1.9-hectare site.

rose st Council sent the original plan back to staff and asked for options to increase the number of units in the build within reasonable constraints, housing development program supervisor Rachelle Hamelin said in a report to council.

For updates on the Rose Street location and additional renderings, visit


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