The City of Toronto is on track to help create 919 new affordable homes through the 2021 call for applications to the City’s Open Door affordable housing program.
The report on the results of the application call was made public this morning and goes to the Planning and Housing Committee on Tuesday, May 31. Staff are recommending 17 affordable housing projects, representing a total of 919 affordable rental homes, for approval by City Council at the June 15 and 16 Council meeting. Thirteen of the 17 affordable housing development projects are proposed by non-profit housing organizations, and of these, two are Indigenous-led and three will create new supportive housing.
The Open Door program is designed to accelerate the creation of affordable housing by providing financial incentives and contributions from the City, including capital funding, exemptions from fees and property tax and fast-tracking of planning approvals. The total value of the recommended Open Door program incentives and capital funding resulting from the 2021 call is more than $75 million. Approximately 29 per cent of the capital funding will be dedicated to supporting two Indigenous projects, exceeding the City’s commitment to Indigenous Peoples. Terms of the program require the homes to be affordable for a minimum period of 40 years, and in many cases the recommended projects will deliver perpetually-affordable rental homes.
The report also recommends City incentives for 25 additional affordable rental homes to be created at 155-65 Elm Ridge Dr. by Reena, a non-profit organization that provides housing with a range of supports for people with disabilities.
Additionally, the report recommends that $3,600,000 in Section 37 funds for Spadina-Fort York be committed to the affordable housing component of the redevelopment of the Palace Arms Hotel at 938-950 King St. W.
The City held the first annual Open Door Call for Applications in 2017, and subject to adoption of the report, a total of 3,312 affordable rental homes will have been approved through the annual calls. The Open Door program also supports other City housing initiatives such as Housing Now, and with the approval of this report, the City will have provided Open Door support to more than 21,700 affordable homes since the program was launched in 2016.
The HousingTO 2020-2030 Action Plan sets targets for the approval of 40,000 new affordable rental homes and 4,000 new affordable ownership homes by 2030. The homes supported through the Open Door program will help lower-income households, including racialized groups, seniors, and essential workers, who have been disproportionately impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, access safe, secure, affordable housing. These new developments will also help create more inclusive, mixed-income communities in neighbourhoods across the city, as envisioned in the Action Plan. More information about the plan is available on the City’s HousingTO webpage.
More information on creating affordable housing in Toronto is available at on the Affordable Housing Partners webpage.
The full Open Door Program 2021 Call for Applications Results: Supporting 919 Affordable Rental and Supportive Homes staff report, including profiles of recommended development sites, is available on City’s website.
“Through the Open Door program, our government is committed to creating more housing options that will benefit all Torontonians. Having access to safe, supportive and affordable homes will help bring a positive change to many lives and enrich our communities. This is one more way we are working to get housing built as quickly as possible.”
– Mayor John Tory
“There is a clear and urgent need for affordable housing throughout the city. Affordable homes are a foundation for good health and prosperity, and I know they will make a big difference for people who are struggling to find a safe and welcoming space. Together with our government and local partners, we will continue working to improve housing affordability and better support people and families in the greatest need of housing.”
– Deputy Mayor Ana Bailão (Davenport), Chair of the Housing and Planning Committee
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