Canada Providing More Rental Housing for Families in Gatineau

GATINEAU, QC, July 2, 2021 /CNW/ – Every Canadian deserves a safe and affordable place to call home. Thanks to investments made by the Government of Canada, residents of Gatineau will soon have access to more stable rental housing options.

Today, the Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development and Minister responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), alongside Greg Fergus, Member of Parliament for Hull, announced a $70 million investment to help construct a new residential building at Zibi block 10, located at 10, rue Jos-Montferrand, Gatineau, and to support a significant decrease in energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions for the overall  34 acre Zibi master planned community project, owned and developed by Dream Unlimited Corp.and Dream Impact Trust.

Zibi Block 10 is receiving a $60 million low cost loan, through the Rental Construction Financing Initiative for the construction of Zibi Block 10, a 15-storey building that will provide Gatineau with 162 new units of much needed rental housing. Conveniently located, the project is part of Zibi, close to public transportation and services for families, in the foothills of Parliament Hill straddling both Ottawa and Gatineau overlooking the Chaudière Falls, just to the south of Gatineau’s downtown core and to the west of Ottawa’s central business district.  

Zibi also received a low cost loan of $10 million through the NHS Affordable Housing Innovation Fund, to help bring 200 affordable units with equal and equitable access to the region’s first zero-carbon District Energy System (ZCU) relying on post-industrial waste energy for heating, and the Ottawa River for cooling. Ultimately, Zibi aims to provide zero carbon heating and cooling for all Zibi tenants and residents in the 34-acre Waterfront City. Zibi Block 10 will house the central District Thermal Plant of the District Energy System that will service the community’s energy needs. The District Energy system, a partnership between Hydro Ottawa and Zibi, upon full build out will be the first post-industrial waste heat recovery system in a master-plan community in North America and first zero carbon emission District Energy Heating and Cooling system in the National Capital Region. 

Quotes:

“Every Canadian deserves a safe and affordable place to call home. Our government is taking action, through projects like this one, to increase the supply of affordable rental housing. Zibi Block 10 will be able to provide Gatineau families with the access they need to: jobs, services and amenities. In addition, through the Innovation Fund, we are encouraging innovative ways to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. This is the National Housing Strategy at work.”The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development and Minister responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)

“Through the National Housing Strategy, our Government is increasing the supply of rental units for Canadians. These investments also create good jobs and grow the local economy and are making a big difference in building a more sustainable future through more energy-efficient and affordable homes. This investment is wonderful news for families of Gatineau and Ottawa, who will soon have more rental housing options.”Greg Fergus, Member of Parliament for Hull

We are grateful for the Government of Canada and CMHC’s support in the creation of hundreds of new rental units at Zibi, and of our Zibi Community Utility district energy system, a key enabler for the realization of our net-zero carbon community. Developing affordable and attainable housing, creating inclusive communities, and ensuring resource efficiency are at the heart of our Dream Impact commitment, and we are very excited to see them come to life here at Zibi.” – Jamie Cooper, Director of Impact Investments, Dream

Quick facts:                                                            

  • ‘Zibi’ is the Algonquin Anishinabe word for ‘river’ and Zibi is a site of great importance to the First Nations people of the area. They are an integral part of the Zibi community and it has been a top priority to consult and engage with the Algonquin Anishinabe at every stage of the project’s development process.
  • Zibi, a 34-acre waterfront community, a city in 2 provinces that will include 2,100 housing units, designed, developed, and owned by Dream Unlimited Corp. and Dream Impact Trust’s subsidiaries and/or affiliates.
  • Zibi is transforming this former brownfield site to an accessible, transit oriented, sustainable inclusive, diverse, and fully integrated mix of residential, retail, commercial, and recreational spaces on the Ottawa River in view of Parliament Hill. Upon completion Zibi will have over 8 acres of riverfront green spaces, parks and plazas, with a total GFA of ~4 million SF, supporting over 6000 jobs and more than 5000 people from all walks of life will call Zibi home.
  • Aligned with Dream Unlimited Corp’s Dream Impact Management System and verticals, Zibi is the first One Planet Community in Canada, and will endeavour to adhere to all 10 Principles of the One Planet Living Framework from eliminating GHG emitting energy sources to encouraging social equity.   
  • Zibi Block 10 has barrier free access including at least two units that are universal design and at least two units that are adaptable, in addition to the minimum of 10% of units within the project that meet or exceed the local accessibility standards.
  • Zibi Block 10 is designed to achieve a minimum of 20% decrease in energy intensity and 40.4% decrease in greenhouse gas emissions relative to the requirements of the 2015 National Energy Code for Buildings.
  • A minimum of 44 units in Zibi Block 10 will be affordable with rents at or below 30% of the median household income. Affordability will be maintained for a minimum of 16 years.
  • Under the Innovation Fund, 200 additional rental units in Zibi will be affordable.
  • Through the RCFi, the Government of Canada is encouraging the construction of more than 71,000 new rental housing units.
  • A stable supply of rental housing is critical to ensure that more Canadians have access to housing that meet their need and that they can afford. This is a great option for middle class Canadians who are experiencing affordability pressure in many markets with high home prices and lack of rental supply.
  • Launched in April 2017, the RCFi has generated significant interest in the industry, which has led to an expansion of the program. Through Budget 2019, the Government of Canada increased the total amount available in loans to $13.75 billion. Given the high demand for the program, the Government again expanded the RCFi in the 2020 Fall Economic Statement by adding an additional $12 billion over 7 years, starting in 2021-22. The program now totals $25.75 billion in low-cost loans.
  • Budget 2021 proposes to provide an additional $600 million over seven years, starting in 2021-22, to renew and expand the Affordable Housing Innovation Fund, which encourages new funding models and innovative building techniques in the affordable housing sector.
  • Canada’s National Housing Strategy (NHS) is a 10-year, $72+ billion plan that will give more Canadians a place to call home.

Associated links:

  • 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, please visit cmhc.ca or follow us on TwitterInstagram, YouTubeLinkedIn and Facebook.

  • To find out more about the National Housing Strategy, visit www.placetocallhome.ca.


Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) (CNW Group/Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation)

SOURCE Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

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