Gentrification is a growing issue that affects racialized neighbourhoods across Canada. Property owners in these neighbourhoods often don’t have access to tools or resources that could help them generate new value from their existing properties.
The Creating Mutual Gains in Canada’s Housing Market Solutions Lab will explore the impact of an online suite of easy-to-use tools and resources. These resources will target property owners in racialized neighbourhoods and help them unlock value in their properties by adding an accessory dwelling unit. Expected outcomes include increasing housing supply, creating generational wealth and improving socio-economic well-being.
3 Key Findings
Increase the supply of rental housing across the GTA and support families in search of core housing.
Create an access to information platform for homeowners who want to create accessory dwelling units to house Canadians in core housing need.
Create partnerships with housing sector stakeholders and develop a roadmap that can be scaled for use in other communities across Canada.
Project scope and expected outcomes
Increasing support for racialized groups
Many racialized neighourhoods in communities across Canada, including the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), are undergoing gentrification. Many of these properties have low land values. Gentrification is increasingly displacing long-time residents and leading to housing unaffordability in these neighborhoods.
Existing housing often doesn’t meet the cultural needs of racialized communities. This leaves low-land-value neighbourhoods vulnerable to redevelopment at a cost they can’t afford. 25% of black families in the U.S. live in multigenerational households, providing social, health and economic benefits to those communities. The black community in Canada also exhibits strong preferences for multigenerational living for similar reasons.
Accessory dwelling units can bring these benefits to Canada’s racialized neighbourhoods in metropolitan areas like the GTA while working to balance the supply of housing. Accessory dwelling units or secondary units include:
- laneway suites
- basement suites
- garden suites
This Lab will address the need for more rental supply. It will do this by enabling homeowners to act as “micro-developers” and create an additional unit on their property. This can help create more gentle density in existing neighbourhoods, where amenities, site servicing and community infrastructure already exist. Accessory dwelling units can make homeownership more affordable by providing a new revenue stream.
The work for this Lab will be done in 5 phases:
- The Definition Phase includes project planning, stakeholder mapping and an engagement strategy to outline the Lab co-design events with the stakeholders. This phase refines the challenge that will be addressed and provides the scope for the rest of the project.
- The Discovery Phase includes research to identify opportunities to unlock wealth in racialized neighbourhoods and communities in Toronto. It will focus on the creation of homeownership opportunities in homes where an accessory dwelling unit can be added. This phase will also define the role of community facilitators.
- The Development Phase will show how accessory dwelling units can benefit community residents and stakeholders. These examples will be used as inputs to the following phase.
- The Prototype and Test Phase evaluates mock-ups of the tools and resources for testing among experts to refine the materials as required. This will create performance indicators to evaluate the tool’s effectiveness. This phase will also host a networking conversation to expand on the ideas and solutions proposed.
- The Roadmap Phase includes a lab report and public-facing roadmap chapter for implementing the solution. This phase will also scale and prepare partners to expand the tool’s use through webinars or community exhibitions.
Sharing findings, designs and the roadmap
Sharing the findings, design and roadmap to encourage broader uptake. Is a central part of this Lab. The project team will share findings with partner organizations for implementation across Canada. The goal is to create accessible orientation materials that make it easy for other groups to use the tool.
- Adrienne Pacini – SHS Consulting
- Joseph Ogilvie – Tim and Frances Price Urban Lab, Brookfield Centre for Real Estate and Infrastructure
- Karen Shlesinger – Tim and Frances Price Urban Lab, Brookfield Centre for Real Estate and Infrastructure
- Christine Pacini – SHS Consulting
- Jim Clayton, Ph. D. – Tim and Frances Price Urban Lab, Brookfield Centre for Real Estate and Infrastructure
Get More Information:
Visit the National Housing Strategy’s Innovation page.
Search our Housing Knowledge Centre for important updates on the progress of this lab.