QUÉBEC CITY, Québec, June 27, 2005 — Low-income families and individuals now have more affordable housing options thanks to the construction of the Coopérative d'habitation Les Méritas and the Coopérative de solidarité L'Étale, two housing projects providing a total of 51 dwellings in Québec City.
This announcement was made today by the Honourable Jean-C. Lapierre, Minister of Transport and Minister responsible for Quebec, on behalf of the Honourable Joe Fontana, Minister of Labour and Housing, and by Margaret F. Delisle, Minister for Youth Protection and Rehabilitation and MNA for Jean-Talon, on behalf of Nathalie Normandeau, Minister of Municipal Affairs and the Regions. In addition to Minister Delisle, Claude Larose, Municipal Councillor responsible for housing on the Québec City Executive Committee, Michel Plourde and Marlène Côté, respectively Chair of the Coopérative d'habitation Les Méritas and Chair of the Coopérative de solidarité L'Étale, were present at the inauguration ceremony.
The construction of the two housing projects, which required investments of over $5.6 million, was completed thanks to the participation of public, private and community partners. The financial contributions for the development of these two projects, totalling $3,784,967, were provided under the affordable housing agreement signed between Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) and the Société d'habitation du Québec (SHQ).
CMHC provided $1,602,172 in financial assistance for these housing projects, while the SHQ contributed a sum of $1,403,990. The community, for its part, provided a sum of $778,805, including an amount of $687,805 from Québec City. The other costs are being assumed by the two co-operatives, in particular through a mortgage loan secured by the SHQ.
"The Government of Canada is pleased to work with the province, the municipality, and community sector representatives to meet the housing needs of the citizens of Québec City," said Minister Lapierre. "The social and community housing units are a source of individual and collective pride. They enhance quality of life, stimulate commercial investment and contribute to the sustainable development of communities."
"I am delighted with the development of these projects that are allowing low-income households to benefit from more social and community housing units that meet their needs. These two housing projects are excellent examples of successful partnerships between the community, the municipalities and the government," said Minister Delisle.
"This sector of the city offers a multitude of nearby services," specified Mr. Larose. "However, the number of social housing units is not sufficiently high there. The two projects inaugurated today are helping to alleviate this shortage."
Among the residents, 11 households from the Coopérative de solidarité L'Étale can benefit from the Rent Supplement program, which provides financial assistance to low-income individuals who would otherwise have to spend more than 25 per cent of their income on housing.
The development of these projects is part of the Government of Quebec's initiative to produce 18,600 social, community and private housing units for low- and moderate-income households. This initiative is notably supported by federal funds made available under affordable housing agreements.
It should be recalled that an Affordable Housing Agreement was signed between CMHC and the SHQ in 2001. It provides for a total contribution of $323.3 million to increase the supply of affordable housing in Quebec, with $161.65 million from the federal government, $104 million from the Quebec government and $57 million from the municipalities participating in the program.
The Governments of Canada and Quebec also signed a second agreement, in August 2004, concerning additional funding for the second phase of the Affordable Housing Program, as Quebec became the first province to sign such an agreement. This makes for a total contribution of $150 million to increase the availability of affordable housing in Quebec. The federal contribution is $75 million, with an equivalent amount being provided by the Government of Quebec and the municipalities participating in the program.
Société d'habitation du Québec
(418) 641-6411, ext. 2526
Communications and Marketing
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
Press Assistant to the Minister of Municipal Affairs and the Regions
Press Assistant to the Minister for Youth Protection and Rehabilitation