Fund to support creation of affordable housing

York Region wants to extend a helping hand to municipalities that want to apply to the Federal Housing Accelerator Fund (HAF) to create shelter spaces and affordable and transitional housing units.

Because it’s an upper-tier municipal government and doesn’t approve building permits, the Region isn’t eligible for funding through the $4-billion project, which is designed to support the creation 100,000 shelter spaces and community, affordable and transitional housing units across Canada.

The Region can, however, support and help coordinate funding applications from its nine cities and towns by providing relevant data and ensuring consistent and coordinated alignment in local municipal approaches to addressing housing need.

The HAF was announced in April 2022 as part of the federal budget along with other initiatives to make housing more affordable and accessible. It’s among measures included in Canada’s National Housing Strategy, a $82-billion plan committed to creating and repairing more than 400,000 housing units, such as community housing, affordable housing, shelter spaces and transitional housing.

The HAF supports municipalities that increase densities, speed up approval timelines, establish inclusionary zoning bylaws and encourage transit-oriented development. Applicants must prepare and include an action plan that will help achieve additional housing supply. The HAF will begin accepting applications in June. Approvals are expected to be paid over a three-year period starting in the fall.

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