By Canadian Contractor staff
Canada launches the Housing Accelerator FundCanadian Contractor Project Management
March 20, 2023, Canada – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the Housing Accelerator Fund (HAF), a $4 billion initiative that will provide funding for local governments to fast-track the creation of 100,000 new homes across Canada. Local governments are invited to develop innovative action plans, in line with the flexible criteria, to remove barriers to building more homes, faster.
The fund will help cities, towns, and Indigenous governments unlock new housing supply by speeding up development and approvals, like fixing out-of-date permitting systems, introducing zoning reforms to build more density, or incentivizing development close to public transit. The fund will provide upfront funding to support implementation, as well as additional funds upon delivering results.
Over the next decade, the Government of Canada aims to double the rate of housing construction to make housing more affordable.
“Canada has the fastest growing population in the G7, but our housing supply hasn’t kept up with demand. The Housing Accelerator Fund will help local governments cut red tape and backlogs, build the housing we need, and give more people in Canada a safe and affordable place to call home,” said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
The application portal for the Housing Accelerator Fund (HAF) will open this June. Local governments are encouraged to begin preparing their proposed action plans today. A full list of eligible system reforms is available on the website of the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.
The HAF will run until 2026-27. It was announced in Budget 2022, along with other initiatives to make housing more affordable and accessible for Canadians.
Local governments interested in applying for the HAF will need to meet program requirements and submit an action plan as part of their application. The action plan must detail the local government’s commitment to a housing supply growth target; alignment to federal priorities of creating dense, affordable, inclusive, and diverse communities; and initiatives they plan to undertake to increase and speed up the supply of housing in their communities. In the absence of municipal-level authority, a regional district, province or territory may also apply to the HAF. Support may also be provided to jurisdictions that request assistance due to capacity issues.
The HAF is part of a larger suite of measures from the federal government to support the creation of housing through Canada’s National Housing Strategy (NHS), an $82+ billion plan that has already committed to the creation and repair of over 400,000 units.