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Construction underway on unique supportive housing facility in Barrie after years of delays

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Construction on a unique multi-million-dollar supportive housing project for struggling families is well underway in Barrie.

The new development behind the Salvation Army's Citadel Church on Lillian Crescent will provide temporary comfort for families in crisis.

The soon-to-be two-storey, 12-unit, fully furnished housing project is a joint initiative between Redwood Park Communities, a Barrie-based charity, and The Salvation Army.

"It's got a massive family room at the beginning to really foster community and social interaction with the families. Each of the units are two-bedroom units, and four of the units are fully accessible," said Timothy Kent, CEO of Redwood Park Communities.

Officials say the project had been in the works for some time, but pandemic lockdowns and increasing costs resulted in delays.

Families staying at the facility will also have access to support from outreach workers and others with similar struggles.

The Salvation Army's executive director Bruce Shirran said the city's need for such a facility is "tremendous."

"The reality is for us is that we're at our full capacity, and of course, we still have families out there looking for shelter, looking for places to stay," Shirran said. "Our present program is being operated out of hotel rooms and apartment units. So, we're really enthused about this project moving forward."

Officials hope to have families moving in by late summer or early fall.

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