Trudeau promises billions for new apartment construction

The announcement comes just days before the federal government plans to release its full budget.

Key Takeaways:

  • The federal government plans to top-up its Apartment Construction Loan Program with $15 billion to build at least 30,000 new apartments. They hope to build more than 131,000 in the coming decade.
  • There are also plans to reform the program with extended loan terms, easier access to financing, introducing a “portfolio approach” to eligibility requirements and fast-tracking applications for proven builders.
  • Trudeau says he will be launching Canada Builds. Similar to BC Builds, it will be a program that partners with provinces and territories to build more rental housing.

The Whole Story:

Canada’s upcoming budget will include billions for apartment construction, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced.

Trudeau says the budget will deliver a $15 billion top-up to the Apartment Construction Loan Program to build a minimum of 30,000 new apartments. With this top-up, officials say the program’s financing is on track to build over 131,000 new apartments within the next decade.

Trudeau also announced a series of new reforms to the Apartment Construction Loan Program to increase access to the program and make it easier for builders to build. These reforms include:

  • Extending loan terms;
  • Extending access to financing to include housing for students and seniors;
  • Introducing a portfolio approach to eligibility requirements so builders can move forward on multiple sites at once;
  • Providing additional flexibility on affordability, energy efficiency, and accessibility requirements; and
  • Launching a new frequent builder stream to fast-track the application process for proven home builders.

“With Budget 2024, we’re making it easier, cheaper, and faster to build more homes in Canada. Today’s announcement will cut red tape, speed up development, and build more homes, so that Canadians – from teachers, to nurses, to construction workers – can afford to stay in the communities where they work. It’s making the housing market fairer for every generation,” said Trudeau.

The federal government also has been taking note of efforts in B.C. Trudeau says he will be launching Canada Builds – a program that will partner with provinces and territories to build more rental housing across the country. The federal government is leveraging its $55 billion Apartment Construction Loan Program by making it available to support partnerships with provinces and territories that launch their own ambitious housing plans, similar to the recently announced BC Builds initiative. In order to access federal financing, provinces and territories will be expected to meet the benchmarks set by BC Builds and deliver action to build even more homes. These actions include:

  • Complementing federal funds with provincial or territorial investments into housing;
  • Building on government, non-profit, community-owned, and vacant lands;
  • Streamlining the process to cut development approval timelines to no longer than 12 to 18 months; and
  • Meeting all criteria included in the Apartment Construction Loan Program, including affordability requirements.

The announcement comes just one day after officials revealed a new $6 billion Canada Housing Infrastructure Fund and a $400 million top-up to the Housing Accelerator Fund.

“Today’s announcement marks another step in our work to end Canada’s housing crisis once and for all,” said Sean Fraser, minister of housing. “ It will speed up development, make construction cheaper, get projects off the shelves, and shovels in the ground. It will mean more homes for middle-class Canadians at prices they can afford.”


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