WINNIPEG, MANITOBA--(Marketwired - March 28, 2014) - A new apartment complex located at 50 Oddy Street in the Brooklands neighbourhood is officially open. The 36 units by Westlands Non-Profit Housing Cooperative Inc. offers enhanced housing quality and accessibility for seniors in Winnipeg.
The Honourable Candice Bergen, Minister of State (Social Development), along with the Honourable Peter Bjornson, Minister of Housing and Community Development, and Winnipeg Mayor Sam Katz, made the announcement.
"Through Canada's Economic Action Plan, our Government has taken concrete action to create jobs, growth and long-term prosperity," said Minister Bergen. "Funding projects like the Westlands Non-Profit Housing Cooperative not only improves the overall housing conditions for seniors in Winnipeg, but also helps to stimulate the local economy and create jobs."
"The new Westlands Non-Profit Housing Cooperative on Oddy Street provides affordable, high-quality, safe housing for seniors in the Brooklands community," said Minister Bjornson. "We will continue to work with our community partners and other levels of government to meet the need for more affordable, safe housing in Manitoba."
"Safe and affordable seniors' housing is a part of creating healthy neighbourhoods," said Mayor Katz. "It's wonderful to be part of a project that provides environmentally-friendly, accessible housing for seniors in the Brooklands neighbourhood."
The new Westlands Non-Profit Housing Cooperative is the first multi-stakeholder housing cooperative in the province supported by Manitoba Housing and Community Development and includes representatives from the Pioneer Seniors Centre, the Keewatin Inkster Neighborhood Resource Council, Sparling United Church and the community at large.
"Westlands at Oddy is a testament to the capacity for community growth when grass roots organizations come together with a common goal," said Reverend Scott MacAuley, Director of Westlands Non-Profit Housing Cooperative. "It's clear that when non-profit organizations work together, the impossible becomes possible."
Joint funding in the amount of $2.38 million was provided by the Governments of Canada and Manitoba. An additional $5.27 million was provided by the Government of Manitoba and over $84,000 from Westlands Non-Profit Housing Cooperative. The site was previously home to Brooklands Community Centre and was purchased from the City of Winnipeg for $1, with the land valued at $137,000.
The building offers geothermal heating and cooling and features that make it accessible for tenants with mobility challenges. The project includes 20 one-bedroom and 16 two-bedroom units. Rents are set at affordable levels for Winnipeg, with 12 units offering rents geared to income. Construction began in April 2012 and was completed on budget.
The federal portion of the funding was made available through Canada's Economic Action Plan, the federal government's plan to stimulate the economy and create jobs. The federal and provincial governments contributed equally to this overall investment of $176 million under the amended Canada-Manitoba Affordable Housing Program Agreement.
Annually, the Government of Canada, through Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), will invest approximately $2 billion in housing. Of this amount, $1.7 billion will be spent in support of close to 600,000 households living in existing social housing. In Manitoba, this represents an estimated 39,700 households. The remaining funding supports housing-related activities and affordable housing programs, including the Investment in Affordable Housing. These investments are improving the quality of life for low-income Canadians and households living in existing social housing, including individuals who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, seniors, persons with disabilities, recent immigrants and Aboriginal people. Economic Action Plan 2013 continues this commitment with a federal investment of more than $1.25 billion over five years to renew the Investment in Affordable Housing to 2019. The Government of Canada will ensure that funds provided to provinces and territories support the use of apprentices, which will support training of skilled labour. Close to 177,600 households across Canada are no longer in housing need as a result of funding provided under the IAH from April 1, 2011 to December 31, 2013.
To find out more about how the Government of Canada and CMHC are working to build stronger homes and communities for all Canadians, call CMHC at 1-800-668-2642 or visit www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca.
Affordable homes are a key component of Manitoba Housing and Community Development's overall strategy to construct 500 more social housing units and 500 new affordable rental units over the next three years, in addition to 1,500 social housing and 1,500 affordable housing units on schedule for 2014.
More information on Manitoba's investments in the future with a vision of strong, healthy communities where individuals and families thrive is available at www.gov.mb.ca/housing/