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Ouellette Unveils Plan for Affordable Housing Development

October 7, 2014 10:55 AM | News

Robert-Falcon Ouellette

Robert-Falcon Ouellette (HANDOUT)

Mayoral candidate Robert-Falcon Ouellette would set a goal to develop 800 new housing units a year if elected.

Ouellette on Tuesday unveiled his housing policy, saying he would aim for 3,200 affordable housing units in his first four years.

“As housing prices move higher and higher, young people, young families are asking themselves if the Winnipeg dream is also for them,” said Ouellette. “Affordable housing is an important part of the social and economic infrastructure of a healthy city.”

He said the city’s current goal of 75 units over the next five years pales in comparison with Calgary’s commitment to build 8,500 units by 2018 and Saskatoon’s commitment to build 5,000 over the next 10 years.

Ouellette’s proposal includes:

  • 300 new units of affordable homes for ownership per year for people of various backgrounds
  • 300 co-op units per year, and
  • 200 new units of social housing per year mixed into existing and new neighbourhoods.

He said this would be achieved through land donations, tax increment financing, cost offset grants, and a moratorium on condo conversions, having the city conserve its existing rental housing stock when vacancy rates are low.

Ouellette also proposed the city allow people to build equity and rent-to-own their own homes, along with working with organizations like Habitat for Humanity, BUILD and MGR (Manitoba Retro-Fit) to help provide funding to ensure that existing housing stock is improved.