The municipality of Barrie is more than halfway toward the goal of adding 840 affordable housing units in the city. The goal was set as part of the Affordable Housing Strategy, which was approved by council on Feb. 18, 2015. Last month, councillors were provided with a monitoring report, which details results and successes since the plan was put in place.
Barrie has created 441 units since the strategy was launched. That’s up from 121 units as of August 2016, when the city installed large public displays in each of the local recreation centres to track the progress toward the goal.
Even with that progress, there is still work to be done. Only Toronto and Ottawa have rents higher than Barrie, averaging about $1,404 and $1,232 respectively for a two-bedroom apartment, as compared to rent in Barrie at $1,205. Although, the city continues to make affordable housing a priority and hopes to build off this early success.
“City council is committed to increasing Barrie’s supply of affordable housing,” said Mayor Jeff Lehman. “To that end, our achievements over the last 18 months lays the foundation for our 2018 work program. I am confident that together— council, staff, community organizations and the development industry—we can make significant strides forward in 2018.”
The 10-year Affordable Housing Strategy aims to encourage, stimulate and increase the supply and range of affordable housing options to meet the needs of residents, at all income levels and all stages of life. In Ontario, affordable home ownership is defined as housing for which the purchase price results in annual accommodation costs which do not exceed 30 per cent of a household’s annual income or is 10 per cent below the average market price. Affordable rental housing is considered to be rents which are at or below the average market price for rental units in the region.
More information about the Barrie Affordable Housing Strategy can be found at barrie.ca/AffordableHousing.