Ontario Construction News staff writer
The County of Simcoe has released Housing Our Future: 2022 Annual Report, to measure and evaluate the implementation of recommendations contained in Our Community 10-Year Affordable Housing and Homelessness Prevention Strategy.
The strategy set a minimum goal of 2,685 new affordable housing units between 2014 and 2024 and reached the goal one year ahead of schedule. As of Dec. 31, 2022, 2,775 new affordable homes had been created across the region since 2014.
“When we decided on and began our affordable housing and homelessness prevention strategy nine years ago, councill knew that the homes we were creating would change lives and futures,” said Warden Basil Clarke. “Since the implementation of the strategy, we have invested heavily in housing for our communities. I am confident that we have momentum and I’m excited for what we will create in the future.”
Highlights of the Housing Our Future: 2022 Annual Report include:
- 244 new homes in 2022
- $1.29 million in rent supplement/housing allowance subsidies
- $91,000 in affordable homeownership down-payment supports
- $650,000 under the Municipal Secondary Suites program
- $300,000 of federal and provincial Secondary Suites funding and an additional $200,000 to address urgent home repairs through the Ontario Renovates Program
- $376,724 in housing retention program for eviction prevention
- Continued progress on affordable housing construction projects, including 130 units in Orillia and 50 units in Bradford West-Gwillimbury
- $2.5 million in funding from the Province of Ontario towards the County’s creation of 14 units of supportive housing at 77 Tiffin Street in Barrie for people experiencing mental health and addiction challenges, persons with disabilities, as well as those experiencing homelessness, with the Busby Centre and the Elizabeth Fry Society providing support services
- Supported adding six new modular supportive housing units at Lucy’s Place in partnership with Redwood Park Communities, Busby Street Centre, Community Builders, and Northern Shield Development
- Completion of a four-bed addition to the transitional housing facility for youth operated by Home Horizon in Collingwood, developed with Provincial Social Services Relief (SSRF) funding
“The county’s strategy continues to focus on supporting residents through maximizing funding, achieving targets, and working with area partners to create affordable housing units for residents across the county,” the statement announcing the report said.