If the Greater Toronto Area is going to accommodate the growing population and fight the housing affordability crisis, we need more partnerships like this one.
Habitat for Humanity GTA recently announced an historic $17 million land trust, provided by Toronto developers, Capital Developments and Metropia. The City of Toronto, St. Clare’s Multifaith homes, and community organization Build a Better Bloor Dufferin are also involved in the affordable housing initiative.
“This is a remarkable win for affordable housing,” said Ene Underwood, CEO of Habitat for Humanity GTA, in a release. “It is an inspiring demonstration of how partnerships between government, the private sector, non-profit groups, and community residents can generate innovative solutions to achieve affordable housing.”
Capital and Metropia will provide $9 million in cash and another $8 million through an interest-free revolving loan (to be paid back in 10 years) to establish the $17 million land trust. Approximately $15 million will be used to develop up to 180 affordable housing units in Toronto, and the other $2 million will go towards community space improvements in the Bloor and Dufferin neighbourhood.
“We know that a lack of affordable housing is a big challenge for Toronto,” said Howard Sokolowski, Chairman and CEO of Metropia. “As builders, we take our mission to provide housing seriously and are thrilled that this agreement will make such a big difference for people in need of stable housing across the City of Toronto.”
There’s a 2,200-unit development in the works in the Bloor and Dufferin area, so some of the land trust will go towards additional affordable housing units in the new community project. Approximately 50% of the funds are allocated to Ward 9 - Davenport.
“As part of our Bloor Dufferin development, on-site, we are conveying to the city a full 8-storey rental residential building for affordable use; however, as companies committed to building communities in Toronto, we know our impact needs to extend beyond the edges of our properties,” said Todd Cowan, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Capital Developments.
When the public sector, private corporations, and community groups come together, their collective resources, skills, creativity, and funding can work magic. This is how communities should be built. We hope other GTA developers are taking note!