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Montreal wants 1,000 “off-market” housing units within three years

Photo: Valérian Mazataud Le Devoir Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante during a press conference on housing at the Jean-Brillant building, in the Sud-Ouest borough, Tuesday

Florence Morin-Martel

Published yesterday at 2:13 p.m. Updated yesterday at 5:33 p.m.

  • Montreal

The mayor of Montreal, Valérie Plante, announced Tuesday that she had reached an agreement with the Société d'habitation et de développement de Montréal (SHDM), with the aim of building or acquiring 1,000 “off-market” housing units within three years.

“To house more Montrealers, we must build more and protect more existing units from speculation,” said Ms. Plante, during a briefing press conference held in the Saint-Henri district.

To achieve this, Valérie Plante specified that she had established a partnership with the SHDM, which is the “real estate arm” of the City. This organization “will have more money, more land and more autonomy to develop more off-market units more quickly,” she explained. The SHDM will thus be able to carry out several projects at the same time.

“When we have sustainable affordable housing which lasts over time and which remains accessible and affordable, it also has a positive effect on the entire market so that the rise in prices is not completely hallucinatory,” argued the mayor.

Of the 1000 housing units, 300 will be reserved for people at risk or experiencing homelessness. “Having a roof is the basis for a lot of things: recovery, services, psychological health,” said Benoit Dorais, vice-president of the City’s executive committee.< /p>

In recent years, a “crisis of vulnerabilities” has been added to the housing shortage, underlined Ms. Plante. It is therefore necessary to provide community support to the most deprived, by setting up affordable housing projects, she said.

In Mercier–Hochelaga-Maisonneuve

As part of the project to build or protect 1000 housing units within three years, an initiative concerning the acquisition of 140 units in the Mercier–Hochelaga-Maisonneuve district will be put to a vote this Wednesday, during the meeting of the Montreal executive committee. “We are talking about buildings that are near metro stations and schools,” explained Mr. Dorais.

Valérie Plante added that the metropolis would inject at least $40 million as part of the agreement concluded with the SHDM. “As of now, $5 million is being offered to start several projects. We will continue to improve this support according to the opportunities that will be seized by the SHDM”, she clarified.

By 2050, the City of Montreal wishes have a rate of 20% of non-market housing in its territory. “It’s ambitious. We're at 7% right now. The goal is that in 2030, we will be at around 12%, to then reach 20% [twenty years later],” said Ms. Plante.

Monday's announcement is part of the Loger+ initiative, which includes a range of measures to build and protect more affordable housing.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116