Ontario Providing More Affordable Housing in Cambridge

Government of Ontario

January 5, 2023

The Ontario government is providing more than $1.8 million to help create 30 affordable housing units in Cambridge.

Located at 27 Cambridge Street, the KW Urban Native Wigwam Project will have 23 one-bedroom and seven two-bedroom culturally appropriate affordable rental units with support services for vulnerable Indigenous households in need of stable housing.

The facility will also provide community space for First Nations, Métis and Inuit people in Cambridge. The space will be culturally safe and inclusive where the Indigenous community can hold traditional ceremonies and create cultural experiences.

“Our government’s policies have delivered historic results in getting more homes built faster and complement our nearly $4.4 billion investments to create community and supportive housing, and address homelessness over the past three years. We are also continuing to work to expand access to mental health and addiction support for people experiencing or at-risk of homelessness,” said Michael Parsa, Associate Minister. “Community and supportive housing is a critical component of our commitment to build 1.5 million new homes over the next 10 years, which will ensure that all Ontarians, especially our most vulnerable, have a home that meets their needs and budget.”

Located in Cambridge’s downtown, the project is close to shopping, grocery stores, a library, pharmacies, transit and employment opportunities.

As highlighted in Ontario’s Action Plan: Protecting People’s Health and Our Economy, today’s announcement is part of the province’s Social Services Relief Fund, which has provided over $1.2 billion of support throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, to help municipal service managers and Indigenous program administrators create longer-term housing solutions and help vulnerable Ontarians, including those who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness.

The Ontario government is also investing an additional $25 million annually in our new Homelessness Prevention Program. The new program simplifies and streamlines operations so municipal service managers can spend less time on paperwork and more time working with their clients to help find housing and other supports and help those at-risk of homelessness stay in their homes. The additional funding brings Ontario’s total yearly investment in the program to close to $464 million.

“Today’s announcement is wonderful news for Cambridge and the Indigenous community,” said MPP Brian Riddell. “Everyone deserves safe, affordable housing, and this project will provide that and so much more to those who call it home. This investment in our community will have a tremendous impact on our collective effort to address the need for affordable housing in Cambridge and across the province.”

The Ontario government has also increased supports under the Indigenous Supportive Housing Program (ISHP) from $13.3 million in 2021-22 to $30 million this fiscal year. This program provides housing assistance and support services to Indigenous people who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness, especially those experiencing chronic homelessness, youth homelessness, and homelessness following transitions from provincially funded institutions.

Quotes

“Our government is focused on creating affordable spaces for the most vulnerable that will give them an opportunity to participate meaningfully in their community,” said Greg Rickford, Minister of Indigenous Affairs. “This affordable housing initiative is part of our governments multi-billion-dollar plan that will address the housing needs of all Ontarians including urban-Indigenous populations in a culturally appropriate setting.”

“The Region is committed to ensuring everyone in our community is included and has a safe place to call home. Projects like the K-W Urban Native Wigwam Project exemplify our vision and put both our Equity Investment Fund and affordable housing plan into action, which would not be possible without our government and community partners.” — Karen Redman, Chair, Region of Waterloo

“K-W Urban Native Wigwam Project is very grateful for the funding support from the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing for this amazing build. This project will be the first for the City of Cambridge as well as the Indigenous community. We have never had one-bedroom units available before and we are very excited to offer this to our single people, couples, elders and students, Chi-Miigwetch (Big Thank you) from all of us.” — Lee Ann Hundt, Executive Director, KW Urban Native Wigwam Project

Quick Facts

  • The Region of Waterloo has been allocated over $39 million under the SSRF.
  • In Budget 2021, the Ontario government released $175 million for mental health and addiction services and supports, building on prior year investments of $176 million announced in October 2020, and $174 million in Budget 2019.
  • The shortage of housing supply impacts all Ontarians, no matter their background or budget. The province’s ongoing work to increase the supply of market housing complements its historic investments to increase the supply of supportive and community housing for its most vulnerable Ontarians.

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