Hamilton to get $93.5-million in ‘incentive payments’ to speed up housing construction


Published October 10, 2023 at 11:10 am

Hamilton housing affordable homes apartments

The federal government and the City of Hamilton have teamed up to fast-track the construction of over 2,600 additional housing units over the next three years through an “incentive” fund providing over $93.5 million.

They announced today (Oct. 10) in Hamilton that their agreement to cut red tape and create “innovative action plans” will help create over 9,000 homes over the next decade.

“I know that housing is the No. 1 issue facing our city. It is my No. 1 priority and also a top priority for our government,” said Filomena Tassi, minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario and the member of Parliament for Hamilton West—Ancaster—Dundas, during a press conference in Hamilton. “That is why I am thrilled … to announce that the City of Hamilton will receive over $93 million in incentive payments through the Housing Accelerator Fund to deliver significant lasting changes to the way homes are built in our ambitious city.”

Tassi said the residences are expected to be built by 2035.

“This is ongoing and we are going to continue to adapt and ensure that we are responding to needs as they arise in communities across the country,” she told reporters in response to a question about the timeline for construction.

She said Hamilton was one of the first cities that was granted funding because of Hamilton’s “exceptional” plan for housing.

The governments struck an agreement under the Housing Accelerator Fund to provide over $93.5 million that will be used to “eliminate barriers” to building housing faster.

They said it will allow for high-density development near rapid transit, including the future Hamilton LRT stations. Furthermore, they said it will make City-owned lands and brownfields available for development.

Under the agreement, Hamilton has pledged to expand zoning permission for housing, including amending a zoning by-law to allow for the construction of four residential units on one lot.

The Housing Accelerator Fund aims to fast track at least 100,000 new homes for people in towns, cities, and Indigenous communities across Canada, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s press release.

Local governments are asked to submit “innovative action plans.” Once they’re approved, they are granted “upfront funding to ensure the timely building of new homes, as well as additional funds upon delivering results,” according to the release.

“Local governments are encouraged to think big and be bold in their approaches, which could include accelerating project timelines, allowing increased housing density, and encouraging affordable housing units,” the press release stated.

During the announcement, Tassi was joined by Lisa Hepfner, parliamentary secretary to the minister for women and gender equality and youth and MP for Hamilton Mountain; Chad Collins, MP for Hamilton East-Stoney Creek; and Hamilton Mayor Andrea Horwath.

The Housing Accelerator Fund, part of Canada’s National Housing Strategy, is a $4-billion federal initiative that will run until 2026-27. It was launched in March.

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