As Ottawa’s largest landlord, Ottawa Community Housing continues to innovate while providing quality homes for tenants. This investment is critical to provide predictability for repairs, ensuring that our communities are modern, more sustainable and greener.

As chair of the board of Ottawa Community Housing, I am glad to see Ottawa Community Housing continue to innovate while providing quality homes for tenants. OCH is proud to work with the Federal Government and the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to bring value and coordination to these much-needed investments over the next nine years.

Today’s announcement highlights the strong partnerships between the Federal Government, the City of Ottawa and Ottawa Community Housing.

Back in September 2020, this same group was making an announcement for $157 million – the largest single investment for the development and the construction of new affordable housing rentals in Ottawa under the National Housing Strategy. This will create about 700 new affordable rentals in both the Rochester Heights and Gladstone Village communities.

While the focus of that important announcement was around building new, affordable, homes our focus today is now turned to this $301 million investment into the repairs and the renewal of existing OCH communities.

This investment of $301 million and this partnership is critical to providing the needed predictability for repair funding. 55% (up to $165 million) is funded by CMHC in the form of forgivable loans and low-cost mortgages. The City and OCH will both contribute through annual subsidy funding and equity funds to cover the balance, 45%.

With this strategic financing opportunity, OCH now has sustained access to capital renewal resources and can ensure that the existing social housing stock is maintained in good condition, modernized, is more sustainable and greener. OCH is proud to ensure that the objectives of this program sustain affordability, while increasing accessibility and bold improvements in energy efficiency criteria.

With an aging portfolio (average 51 years old), and a historical underfunding of capital repairs, establishing a sustained funding mechanism for a portion of the capital needs is key to the long-term sustainability of this housing stock. This level of funding will breathe new life into OCH’s social housing portfolio and its hundreds of communities by improving building conditions and reducing the repairs waiting list as it targets improvements to building cladding, roofing, windows, elevators, heating/cooling systems, and more.

A commitment of $33 million per year for nine years signifies more than 800 projects. The majority of these 15 000 units will directly benefit the majority of tenants of OCH and their communities.

The impact within the local economy of Ottawa is similarly impressive at $930 million in economic benefits, over 6,000 jobs created and over 2,000 contracts awarded.

OCH is proud to work with the Federal Government, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation and the City of Ottawa to bring value and coordination to these much-needed investments over the span of nine years.