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Federal funding injects $25.6 million to accelerate home construction in Barrie


The federal government is injecting $25.6 million to fast-track and support the development of thousands of new homes in the City of Barrie.

The funding, through the Canadian government's Housing Accelerator Fund (HAF), aims to eliminate barriers hindering the construction of much-needed housing and get shovels in the ground on more than 4,100 new homes over the next decade.

"We are dedicated to maximizing the impact of every dollar granted to ensure that Barrie residents have access to permanent, attainable, and affordable housing options that align with the pace of our city's rapid growth," said Barrie Mayor Alex Nuttall.

The City intends to build 680 new homes over the next three years.

Barrie's Action Plan outlines nine initiatives designed to streamline the housing development process. These include permitting four units on one lot without the need for rezoning, making city-owned lands available for housing projects, and expanding the City's Affordable Housing Community Improvement Plan to include forgivable loans for secondary suites.

The initiative aims to cut through the red tape and expedite the permitting process for at least 100,000 new homes within a span of three years, with the federal government hoping for the creation of over 750,000 permitted new homes nationwide over the next decade.

"The goal here is to make sure that we have housing available for young people, housing available for those in the workforce, housing available for those that are hurting," the mayor added.

However, navigating the complexities of housing development is no easy feat, particularly considering housing falls largely under the jurisdiction of municipal and provincial governments.

"But if we put federal money on the table and say to cities we're going to reach a deal with you where we directly fund you based on the reforms you're going to implement, we've seen an extraordinary uptake in that offer," said Sean Fraser, Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities.

While the Ontario government was notably absent for Thursday's announcement, Premier Doug Ford is scheduled to arrive in Barrie on Friday to make a housing announcement of his own. Top Stories

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