Slideshow image

CityHousing Hamilton approves $11-million plan for seniors’ housing in east end

Forty-four units are to be built atop an expanded Dominic Agostino Riverdale Community Centre on Violet Drive.

Article from The Hamilton Spectator: Mar 01, 2019 by Teviah Moro.

CityHousing Hamilton plans to build a 44-unit affordable seniors' residence on public school board land in the east end.

The social housing provider's board has signed off on finances for the $11-million building to be constructed on top of an existing recreation centre in Riverdale.

Coun. Chad Collins says the residence will help chip away at Hamilton's wait list for social housing units.

"In particular, this site would give us a good opportunity to start taking people off the list."

The seniors' residence is CityHousing's fifth development project to be approved since it embarked on a major plan to rejuvenate its aging stock.

CityHousing has struggled to keep up with a repair backlog while contending with a growing wait list that now has 5,579 households in need of assistance.

The Dominic Agostino Riverdale Community Centre on Violet Drive will be expanded before the apartments are built on top.

Collins believes the configuration is the first of its kind in Canada, and one that will encourage residents to remain active. "You don't have to brave the elements."

A $2-million child care centre is to be a third element of what planners are calling a community hub.

Riverdale, which is on the border with Stoney Creek, has been home to relatively reasonable accommodation for years with many new Canadians.

It's also where a group of residents at Stoney Creek Towers started a rent strike in May over proposed rate hikes.

Collins says the 44 units promise to be a beachhead of affordability when its residents move in, possibly in 2021.

He expects land values to spike with Metrolinx building an east-end terminus on Centennial Parkway North.

"I can say I know what's in store for this area with the opening of the GO station."

The Riverdale development calls for 30 studio apartments and 14 one-bedroom units. The rate for about half of those will be 69 per cent of "median market rent" with the remainder at 100 or 110 per cent.

The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation reported the average rent for a bachelor unit in the east end was $885 in October 2018. The average one-bedroom was $923.

But going rates are much higher. For instance, a one-bedroom unit at Stoney Creek Towers starts at $1,300, according to the landlord's website.

[email protected]

905-526-3264 | @TeviahMoro

[email protected]

905-526-3264 | @TeviahMoro