The City of Toronto has opened its first modular, supportive housing building just eight months after receiving approval from city council to proceed. Part of the Modular Housing Initiative, the building at 11 Macey Avenue will be joined by a second building located at 150 Harrison St. for a total of 100 new affordable, supportive homes within the next several weeks.
The new homes will house individuals exiting the shelter system and requiring safe, welcoming accommodations. Comprised entirely of studio apartments, common areas will include a dining room, program space and administrative offices.
“We have worked to be able to quickly welcome 56 residents to their brand-new home with support services,” said Mayor John Tory. “The City’s Modular Housing Initiative is an innovative and cost-effective way in which we are building affordable housing while providing a quick, long-term response to help those experiencing homelessness. A big component of our housing plan is to invest in and create more supportive housing options which will help ensure that people are able to get the services they need. We know we need to build housing options quickly, modular housing is an innovative way for us to speed up the process and provide housing stability for residents across this city.”
The Neighbourhood Group and COTA Health were selected to operate and provide support services at both locations. The operators will provide 24/7 on-site staffing and will offer a number of supports to tenants.
Each home is approximately 300 square feet and comes with a built-in kitchen (including a stove top), microwave and fridge. The homes are furnished with a twin bedframe and mattress, a lounge chair, dining table and chairs and a dresser. Twenty-five per cent of the homes are accessible.
The City’s Modular Housing Initiative will see 250 new homes built in two phases. The first 100 homes are Phase I. In Phase II, the City will deliver an additional 150 supportive homes in 2021. The full capital cost for the 250 homes is $47.5 million. Funding of $28.75 million is coming from the City’s Development Charges Reserve Fund for Subsidized Housing, and $18.75 million is from the Government of Canada through Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s Affordable Housing Innovation Fund in grants and recoverable loans.
More information about the plan is available online: https://www.toronto.ca/community-people/community-partners/affordable-housing-partners/housingto-2020-2030-action-plan/