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Building more homes that Canadians can afford in Edmonton, Alberta

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Right now, in communities across the country, building affordable housing is too hard. That’s why the federal government is working with municipalities to break down barriers and build more homes, faster so Canadians – whether they are just starting out, growing their families, or aging in security – can find a place to call home, at a price they can afford.

The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today announced that the federal government has reached an agreement with the City of Edmonton, Alberta, to fast-track over 5,200 new housing units over the next three years. This work will help spur the construction of more than 22,000 homes over the next decade and help meet the demand in Edmonton.

Under the Housing Accelerator Fund, this agreement will provide over $175 million to eliminate barriers to building the housing we need, faster. It will create more housing options in the city, including more rentals, affordable apartments, and housing near university and college campuses. Edmonton has already begun permitting eight units as of right and up to three storeys city-wide, with some neighborhoods permitted to build up to eight storeys. As part of the agreement, the city will streamline zoning bylaw approvals, build more homes around public transit, and use city-owned land to build hundreds of new homes.

To build more affordable, non-profit housing, Edmonton will give more resources to builders, provide pre-development funding, and shorten approval timelines to ensure these projects get off the ground. Edmonton has been a leader in innovative home-building and together, these initiatives will significantly improve the way affordable housing is built and delivered in one of Canada’s largest cities.

The Housing Accelerator Fund is helping cut red tape and fast-track the construction of over 600,000 new homes for people in towns, cities, and Indigenous communities across Canada over the next decade. It asks for innovative action plans from local governments, and once approved, provides upfront funding to ensure the timely building of new homes, as well as additional funds upon delivering results. Local governments are encouraged to think big and be bold in their approaches, which could include accelerating project timelines, allowing increased housing density, and encouraging affordable housing units.

The Government of Canada is supporting the middle class – and housing is key to that work. Our plan to double the rate of housing construction over the next decade will help build the housing supply we need. We are working with provincial, territorial, and municipal governments, as well as Indigenous partners, to build more homes for Canadians, faster, and make life better for everyone.

Quotes

“Edmonton needs more homes that Canadians can afford. That’s why we’re working with the City to cut red tape and change the way we build housing. Today’s announcement with Edmonton will build more affordable homes, faster, and help more Canadians achieve home ownership.”

The Rt. Hon. Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada

“We are excited and proud to announce this partnership with Edmonton today. From incentivizing development in priority growth areas and around transit hubs to streamlining the permitting process and working with the City to pave the way for more affordable homes, we will ensure that Edmonton has more of the kind of homes we need to tackle the housing crisis. By working with cities, towns, mayors, and all levels of government, we are getting more homes built for Canadians at prices they can afford.”

The Hon. Sean Fraser, Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities

“Edmonton has made bold moves to ensure our city can support diverse and affordable housing options for all. Under the Housing Accelerator Fund, we can boost building opportunities, streamline our processes, and build inclusive, climate-resilient communities. Investments like these are essential to make the systemic changes needed to address the housing and houselessness emergency in Edmonton.”

His Worship Amarjeet Sohi, Mayor of Edmonton

Quick Facts

  • The City of Edmonton’s Housing Accelerator Fund agreement will also update water flow regulations, promote secondary suite development, adjust administrative standards for affordable housing development, and reduce application review timelines through digitization, automation, and artificial intelligence.
  • As part of its Action Plan, Edmonton will gradually phase out the tax premium on properties that have four or more units on one lot. Currently, the tax rate on these properties is 15 per cent more than on other residential properties. It will be lowered by three per cent each year for five years.
  • The Housing Accelerator Fund is a $4 billion initiative from the Government of Canada that will run until 2026-27. It is designed to help cities, towns, and Indigenous governments unlock new housing supply through innovative approaches and fast-track at least 100,000 permitted new homes over the first three years.
  • With today’s announcement, the Government of Canada has signed 50 agreements since the launch of the Housing Accelerator Fund. Combined, these agreements will fast-track an estimated total of over 600,000 housing units over the next decade.
  • The Housing Accelerator Fund is part of Canada’s National Housing Strategy (NHS), an $82+ billion plan to give more Canadians a place to call home. Progress on programs and initiatives is updated quarterly at www.placetocallhome.ca. The Housing Funding Initiatives Map shows affordable housing projects that have been developed.
  • Since the creation of the NHS, the Government of Canada has committed over $38.89 billion to support the creation of almost 152,000 units and the repair of over 241,000. These measures prioritize those in greatest need, including seniors, Indigenous Peoples, people experiencing or at risk of homelessness, and women and children fleeing violence.
  • Since 2015, the government has helped almost two million Canadians find a place to call home.

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