Tomorrow, the City of Toronto is releasing the first Call for Applications under the Open Door program to create more affordable rental housing across Toronto. The new Open Door Guidelines and application form will also be issued to make it easier for housing organizations to access the program.
The Call for Applications offers a range of financial contributions including fees and property tax exemptions and capital funding. Successful Open Door applications will also benefit from the Open Door Planning Service which fast-tracks approvals. The deadline for submissions is May 31.
“We are committed to building more affordable housing at a faster pace,” said Mayor John Tory. “With this application process, Toronto continues to take the lead in helping people find safe, decent and affordable homes. We’re looking to the private and non-profit housing sectors to step up and join us in this initiative.”
Toronto City Council approved the Open Door program in 2016 to accelerate affordable housing construction by providing financial contributions, including capital funding, fees and property tax relief, fast-tracking planning approvals and activating surplus public land.
“This is another important piece in Toronto’s ongoing efforts to find housing solutions for residents,” said Councillor Ana Bailão (Ward 18 Davenport), Toronto’s Housing Advocate. “But we know that much more remains to be done and we will continue to work hard and find ways to build more affordable housing.”
The Open Door program also includes:
• activating five surplus City sites for the construction of affordable rental and ownership homes
• preparing 15 other City sites with affordable housing potential
• encouraging the private sector to build more affordable housing by offering City financial incentives currently limited to non-profit groups
• supporting the creation of 400 affordable ownership homes annually through a development charges deferral initiative, and
• providing a minimum of 500 housing allowances to increase affordability in buildings constructed under Open Door.
The Call for Applications, Open Door guidelines and application form are available on the Affordable Housing Office (AHO) website at http://www.toronto.ca/affordablehousing or by contacting the AHO at 416-397-4169 and getting on the Open Door Registry.
The Open Door program also calls on the federal and provincial governments to facilitate affordable housing creation by releasing surplus public land, making new investments and increasing financial and tax incentives for developers.
Toronto is Canada’s largest city, the fourth largest in North America, and home to a diverse population of about 2.8 million people. It is a global centre for business, finance arts and culture and is consistently ranked one of the world’s most livable cities. In 2017, Toronto will honour Canada’s 150th birthday with “TO Canada with Love,” a year-long program of celebrations, commemorations and exhibitions. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can visit http://www.toronto.ca, call 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, follow us on Twitter @TorontoComms or Instagram @cityofto.