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First Homes To Be Built Under New Affordable Housing Initiative

WINNIPEG, Manitoba, July 14, 2003 — Winnipeg residents will soon have access to more safe and affordable housing with the construction of 14 homes in the Spence, William Whyte and North Point Douglas neighbourhoods. The projects are made possible with the help of up to $760,000 in funding from the Government of Canada, the Province of Manitoba and the City of Winnipeg.

The Honourable Steven Mahoney, Secretary of State responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC); the Honourable Drew Caldwell, Minister of Manitoba Family Services and Housing; and Glen Murray, Mayor of Winnipeg took part in a sod-turning event at 371 Maryland Street, the site of one of the new homes.

Today's announcement marks the first projects funded under the new Canada-Manitoba Affordable Housing Initiative (AHI) which supports community-driven efforts to create more safe and affordable housing. The funding is being provided to the North End Housing Project and Spence Neighbourhood Association and flows through the Winnipeg Housing and Homelessness Initiative, an existing partnership between the Government of Canada, the Province of Manitoba and the City of Winnipeg.

"These projects demonstrate the commitment of local residents to ensure their community is directly involved in developing housing that will meet their needs", said Secretary of State Mahoney. "Together with the community, we are creating more opportunities for families to obtain safe, quality housing in Winnipeg and throughout the province."

"We are extremely pleased to take this significant step, with our neighbourhood partners, to respond to the need for more affordable housing that helps build communities and strengthen families", said Minister Caldwell. "This is just the start of many projects to come under the new Canada-Manitoba Affordable Housing Initiative, which builds upon previous successes through the Winnipeg Housing and Homelessness Initiative, all of which are creating more affordable housing for low- and moderate-income citizens."

"The many volunteers and staff of the Spence Neighbourhood Association and the North End Housing Project have made remarkable progress in their efforts to rejuvenate housing in their areas", said Mayor Murray. "Their commitment and dedication to the community and the City is helping create vibrant, safe and healthy inner-city neighbourhoods. The construction of these new homes through the City's Affordable Housing Initiative is a further step towards making revitalization a reality."

Funding support includes $620,000 cost-shared by the governments of Canada and Manitoba under the Affordable Housing Initiative's New Homeownership Supply Program and Manitoba's Neighbourhood Housing Assistance program and also $140,000 through the City of Winnipeg Housing Policy Initiative. Total project costs are estimated at $1.44 million, with the project applicants contributing the balance of the costs through private financing.

The new homes are a two-story, three bedroom design. The homes will meet the energy-efficient R2000 certification. The design is flexible and adaptable to the needs of people with disabilities and for future developments or home improvements.

North End Housing Project will receive $630,000 to build 10 new homes in the William Whyte and North Point Douglas neighbourhoods. These homes will be leased, with an option-to-purchase, to low- and moderate-income households who must qualify for mortgage financing and also must complete a homeownership training program.

"We are pleased to be working in concert with local residents to develop and implement plans that not only revitalize housing, but whole neighbourhoods", said Nanette McKay, Executive Director of the North End Community Renewal Corporation. "These 10 new homes will be another crucial step toward our vision of creating a more diverse and vibrant community." "New and older housing side by side - that is what renewal is all about."

Spence Neighbourhood Association will construct four single-family homes with $130,000 in funding. These units will be sold directly to homebuyers in the area.

"The new homes are a sign of hope for long-term residents who have watched many old houses come down and some families move away", said Daniele Davis, President of the Spence Neighbourhood Association. "We are excited about the prospect of creating more affordable, safe housing and increasing home ownership in the Spence neighbourhood through the construction of these new homes."

The new homes will be built by Green Tree Homes, the successful bidder in a public tender issued last year by the North End Housing Project and the Spence Neighbourhood Association. This is the second phase of a housing project launched last year that created six new homes, including two single family homes in the Spence neighbourhood and two side-by-side duplexes in William Whyte. The two family homes were sold to new homebuyers and the side-by-side units have been leased, with an option to buy after five years.

The projects are being coordinated by the Winnipeg Housing and Homelessness Initiative, a partnership established by the Government of Canada, the Province of Manitoba and the City of Winnipeg to address homelessness, declining housing stock and the revitalization of Winnipeg's older neighbourhoods. Located at 361 Hargrave Street, the WHHI serves as a single-window office for community organizations to access information on government funded housing and homelessness programs.

Media inquiries:

Brian Williamson
Communications
Winnipeg Housing and Homelessness Initiative (WHHI)
(204) 984-0592
e-mail: brian.williamson@hrdc-drhc.gc.ca

Mary Williams
North End Housing Project
(204) 953-1895

Inonge Aliaga
Spence Neighbourhood Association
(204) 986-5467

Government Funding Details

Government of Canada

For more information on Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, visit the CMHC Web site at: www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca

Under the National Homelessness Initiative (NHI), communities in Manitoba will receive approximately $24 million:

The SCPI is based on a community plan developed by the various partners to design and implement local solutions to their particular homelessness issues. The SCPI funds up to 50 per cent of the costs of implementing the community plan. The other 50 per cent is comprised of direct or in-kind contributions from a variety of partners, including other levels of government, community organizations, and the private and voluntary sectors.

Additional federal funding assistance is provided through the following programs:

For more information on the Government of Canada's National Homelessness Initiative, visit the NHI Web site at: www.homelessness.gc.ca

Government of Manitoba

Neighbourhoods Alive! is a long-term development strategy aimed at providing community groups in designated areas of Winnipeg, Brandon and Thompson with the support they need for programs in the areas of housing and physical improvements, employment and training, education and recreation, and safety and crime prevention. The Manitoba government has committed $3.7 million to Neighbourhoods Alive! in the 2003 budget to develop local capacity, innovative training and provide a fund through which local neighbourhoods can implement their revitalization plans.

In addition, under Neighbourhoods Alive! and through the Winnipeg Housing and Homelessness Initiative, the Government of Manitoba has committed:

The Manitoba government has also committed close to $2 million annually to its share of federal renovation programs, including the Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program (RRAP) and the Shelter Enhancement Program (SEP).

Through the Canada-Manitoba Affordable Housing Initiative, Manitoba has committed $25.39 million to further increase support for the development of safe and affordable housing. Funding support under the New Rental Supply, New Homeownership Supply, Repair/Conversion and Homebuyer Down Payment Assistance Programs is available to support housing proposals.

For more information on Manitoba Family Services and Housing, visit: www.gov.mb.ca/fs/

City of Winnipeg

The City of Winnipeg has allocated $17.5 million over five years under the Winnipeg Housing Policy and the Canada-Manitoba Affordable Housing Initiative to fund housing initiatives in targeted inner-city neighbourhoods:

For more information on the City of Winnipeg, visit: www.winnipeg.ca

Steven Mahoney, Daniele Davis, Drew Caldwell, Nanette McKay & Glen Murray
From left to right: The Honourable Steven Mahoney, Secretary of State responsible for CMHC, Daniele Davis, President, Spence Neighborhood Association, Drew Caldwell, Minister of Family Services and Housing, Nanette McKay, ED, North End Community Renewal Corporation and Glen Murray, Mayor of Winnipeg.

The Honourable Steven Mahoney, Secretary of State responsible for CMHC
The Honourable Steven Mahoney, Secretary of State responsible for CMHC