Everyone in Canada deserves a safe and affordable place to call home. The COVID-19 crisis has made it clear that affordable housing is key to Canada’s recovery, in communities across the country, including those in Windsor and Essex County.
Today the Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion, alongside Irek Kusmierczyk, Member of Parliament for Windsor – Tecumseh and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Gary McNamara, Warden of the County of Essex and Mayor of Tecumseh, Drew Dilkens, Mayor of the City of Windsor, Hilda MacDonald, Mayor of the Municipality of Leamington, and Chief Mary Duckworth of Caldwell First Nation, announced nearly $20 million in federal funding to create an estimated 61 new affordable homes for individuals and families in Windsor, Essex County and the Caldwell First Nation, through the Rapid Housing Initiative (RHI).
These housing units will support Canadians who are in uncertain housing situations, experiencing or at risk of homelessness or living in temporary shelters. The first project, located at 310 Sherk Street in Leamington, will be managed by the Bridge Youth Resource Centre and will consist of 8 units for young adults, women, Indigenous people, and Black Canadians.
The second project, to be operated by Windsor Essex Community Housing Corporation, will be located at 462 Crawford Street in Windsor. The 15 units will be targeted to young adults, those living with physical disabilities, Indigenous people and Black Canadians.
The third project will also be operated by the Windsor Essex Community Housing Corporation and will be located at 3351 Bloomfield in Windsor. The project will create approximately 12 units, including for Indigenous people, women and children, Black Canadians, those experiencing homelessness or those at risk of homelessness, those with physical disabilities and racialized groups.
All three projects are expected to be substantially complete by the end of 2022.
Two additional projects, led by the Caldwell First Nation, will build 26 units for members of the Caldwell First Nation. The units will be a mix of townhomes and fourplexes for seniors and other members of the community.
Both projects are expected to be complete by summer 2022.
New investments under the Rapid Housing Initiative will create thousands of good jobs in the housing and construction sector, grow the middle class, and build back stronger communities while getting us closer to our goal of eliminating chronic homelessness in Canada.
“Everyone in Canada deserves a safe and affordable place to call home. Today’s investment through the Rapid Housing Initiative is a step towards the right direction to support those most vulnerable in Windsor and Essex County, and Caldwell First Nations. These new homes will offer their residents stability and safety and is another way our National Housing Strategy continues to ensure no one is left behind.”
“Before the pandemic began, there were over 5,000 families on the waiting list for affordable housing in Windsor and Essex County. Creating housing rapidly to address this generational challenge is a priority for our Government. This new funding will provide immediate support to build safe and stable housing for our most vulnerable neighbours.”
“In an environment of escalating home prices, making sure all residents of our region have appropriate and affordable housing is more challenging and urgent than ever. The County of Essex is proud to partner with the federal government, City of Windsor and The Bridge Youth Resource Centre in an innovative project to address those needs in the Municipality of Leamington.”
“Everyone deserves safe and stable housing. Like all municipalities across Canada, Windsor is no stranger to the rising costs of housing. Putting more shovels in the ground to build more homes is an important step to help reduce prices, support and address chronic homelessness, create more affordable, innovative and purpose-built housing options, and prove that access to home ownership is possible at all levels of income. I'm grateful to the Government of Canada for their significant investment in Windsor and Essex County as we continue working together in the face of a national housing crisis.”
“The Municipality of Leamington is always appreciative of funding that improves the quality of life for its residents. The Bridge Youth Resource Centre has been a tremendous resource for vulnerable young people in our community since they opened their doors. Providing monies for valuable assets in Canadian communities is money well spent.”
“I have gratitude as Caldwell First Nation was included in this initiative and now can begin to build energy efficient sustainable housing for our citizens and future generations. Caldwell First Nation is the process of creating an urban First Nation within the boundaries of the Municipality of Leamington. Our citizens now have the opportunity to reside in safe and energy efficient sustainable homes. Meeting our community needs by providing affordable sustainable housing to meet the needs of growing families is important to leadership, this initiative is much appreciated”
“We are grateful to have been included in CMHC’s Cities Stream of the RHI funding through the City of Windsor to allow our organization the opportunity to provide affordable housing to those who need it most. We are also thankful for the support of the project from the Municipality of Leamington and the County of Essex. We have seen first-hand the challenges our youth face in finding local housing options. Through this initiative, we are continuing the work to support our youth in reaching their potential as well as achieve our strategic vision goals. This project is part of a larger tiny home initiative to create a safe and inclusive community that extends to service other population groups, including young adults, women, seniors, Indigenous people and Black Canadians.”
- The RHI is a $2.5 billion program to help address urgent housing needs of vulnerable Canadians, especially in the context of COVID-19, through the rapid construction of over 10,000 units of affordable housing.
- The RHI has received significant interest from Indigenous groups, which has resulted in 41% of all units created under the program being targeted to Indigenous peoples.
- Units are intended to be constructed within 12 months of when funding is provided to program applicants (with some exceptions), with units in the North and in special access communities intended to be constructed within 18 months.
- Close to 33 per cent of this new funding will go toward women-focused housing projects. The units will be built within 12 months of when funding is provided to program applicants.
- The RHI takes a human rights-based approach to housing, serving people experiencing or at risk of homelessness and other vulnerable people under the NHS, including women and children fleeing domestic violence, seniors, young adults, Indigenous peoples, people with disabilities, people experiencing mental health and addiction issues, veterans, LGBTQ2 individuals, racialized and Black Canadians, and recent immigrants or refugees.
- The Government of Canada’s National Housing Strategy is an ambitious, 10-year plan that will invest over $72 billion to give more Canadians a place to call home.
- Coronavirus disease (COVID-19)
- Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan
- Rapid Housing Initiative
- National Housing Strategy
As Canada’s authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers unbiased housing research and advice to all levels of Canadian government, consumers and the housing industry. CMHC’s aim is that by 2030, everyone in Canada has a home they can afford, and that meets their needs. For more information, follow us on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.
For information on this release:
Office of the Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation