Housing Accelerator Fund: New housing in 10 Canadian cities
In March 2023, the government launched the $4 billion Housing Accelerator Fund to help fast-track the creation of at least 100,000 new homes across Canada. The Fund is already delivering results – and on its current trajectory, is expected to exceed 100,000 new homes.
Over the next three years alone, the Housing Accelerator Fund has already made progress to build over 21,000 more homes, with agreements already announced with London, Vaughan, Hamilton, Brampton and Kitchener Ontario; Halifax, Nova Scotia; Kelowna, British Columbia, Calgary, Alberta; and Moncton, New Brunswick.
On November 9th, 2023, the federal government signed an agreement with Quebec for a joint contribution of $1.8 billion. The $900 million provided by the federal government, almost 23% of all Housing Accelerator Funding, will go towards building more homes for Quebecers.
Below will summarize the agreements the Canadian government has made with each city and the expected number of homes to be built with the help of the Housing Accelerator Fund.
The agreement with London was announced in September 2023, making it the first city to sign an agreement with the federal government. The agreement will deliver $74 million in federal housing to London to build 2,000 homes.
The agreement includes allowing up to four units to be built on a single property in low density neighbourhoods and disposing of city-owned land for more development. In addition, London will work to create partnerships with non-profit housing providers to build more affordable homes.
The agreement with Vaughan will deliver $59 million in federal funding to build 1,700 home. It will allow for high density development near public transit like the subway and GO train stations.
The agreement also prioritizes fixing outdated permitting system to speed up development and building apartments and affordable housing.
Hamilton will receive $93.5 million in federal funding to build 2,600 homes. The agreement will prioritize building developments near rapid transit, including the future Hamilton LRT stations.
Furthermore, the agreement plans on making city owned lands and brownfields available for development and allowing for the construction of four residential units on one lot.
The agreement with Brampton is to deliver $114 million in federal funding to build 3,150 homes. It includes reducing barriers to the development of housing in key areas of the city, such as urban centers, boulevards, and major public transit stations.
In addition, the agreement will focus on expanding zoning permission for housing, including permitting four residential units and four storeys within 800 meters of transit. It will also create new incentive programs for affordable housing.
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Halifax will receive $79.3 million in federal funding to build 2,600 new homes. The agreement will incentivize the use of pre-approved building plans and develop an incentive program to convert commercial real estate to residential.
The agreement will also prioritize improving the permit process and reduce costs for permitting, encourage development along transit corridors, create incentives for small scale residential construction and create a program to identify surplus land for affordable housing.
Kelowna, British Columbia
The agreement with Kelowna is to deliver $31.5 million in federal funding to build 950 homes. It will prioritize allowing for higher density development along rapid transit corridors and make city-owned lands available for affordable housing development in partnerships with non-profits.
In addition, Kelowna plans to expand the use of technology to streamline building permit applications and expand zoning for more infill housing in Kelowna’s core.
The agreement announced with Kitchener to deliver $42.4 million in federal funding to build 1,200 new homes. The agreement will also encourage high and medium housing around Kitchener’s Light Rail Transit stations by making planning regulations more permissive.
Kitchener will also work to make affordable housing easier to build by making land and incentives available to affordable housing providers.
Calgary will receive $228 million in federal funding to build 6,800 new homes. The agreement with the city will work to expand upon the city’s office space conversion program.
It will also create homes on city-owned land in proximity to transit stations and enable growth by allowing infill housing in established neighbourhoods.
Moncton, New Brunswick
The agreement announced with Moncton is to deliver $15.5 million in federal funding to build 490 new homes.
It encourages missing middle development, accessory dwelling units, and support non-profit housing developers. Finally, Moncton will develop building plan templates for energy-efficient multi-unit residential buildings.
Province of Quebec
The $1.8 billion in new funding for housing construction will lead to the creation of 8,000 social and affordable housing units, 500 of which will be reserved for people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
The agreement with Quebec will also focus on creating a project acceleration unit in collaboration with Quebec municipalities and adopting new government policies for land use planning, with housing construction indicators on which municipalities will have to base their targets.