Affordable Housing in West End Toronto

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1 Affordable Housing in West End Toronto

2 Affordable Housing in West End Toronto City of Toronto 1

3 1. Scadding Cabin, Exhibition Place Built in 1794 for John Scadding, clerk to Upper Canada s first Lieutenant-Governor, John Graves Simcoe, Scadding Cabin is Toronto s first European settler s house. The York Pioneer Historical Society moved the oneroom cabin, made from squared, white pine logs from its original site next to the Don River at Queen Street to its present location in 1879 to coincide with the inauguration of the Toronto Industrial Exhibition (later the CNE). The cabin is now recognized as the city s first example of historic preservation. Society members continue to maintain the cabin, and happily provide information about the early history of York (Toronto).

4 2. Parkdale Neighbourhood Parkdale originally developed as a prosperous village in the late 19th and first half of the 20th Century, with gracious Victorian homes on tree-lined streets. In the 1950 s, the Gardiner Expressway was built and Sunnyside Amusement Park torn down, among other community fixtures, breaking the community s connection to the lakefront. This prompted families to leave the area, with an ensuing decline in businesses and real estate values. Single-family homes were replaced with multi-family dwellings and buildings converted to rooming houses.

5 In the 70s, deinstitutionalization of psychiatric patients occurred without community services in place to support them. The Queen Street Mental Health Centre (now part of the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health) was located nearby, so many patients remained because of low rents and proximity to support services. Parkdale developed a reputation as a neighbourhood of poverty, crime, drugs, and large numbers of homeless people. In recent years, due in large part to its location close to downtown, Parkdale has evolved into a vibrant community. Today, it is an increasingly stable neighbourhood, with a mix of new immigrants, artists and young professionals. An increasing number of single-family homes helps balance the community makeup, which has attracted new businesses and services.

6 3. Shalom House: 1339 King Street West Shalom House is part of the Green Phoenix revitalization (see #4, next page) and provides transitional and supportive housing for the Parkdale United Church Foundation. This development involved the conversion of a Victorian building into 10 selfcontained bachelor apartments for people who have been homeless. Funding was provided primarily by the federal Supporting Communities Partnership Initiative (SCPI) and the City of Toronto.

7 4. Green Phoenix: 1355 King Street West The Green Phoenix is a renovated 11-storey, 136-unit social housing apartment building. The building was developed by the Parkdale United Church Foundation in the 1970 s, with assistance from the federal nonprofit housing program. The tower needed sustainable upgrades, so the renewal began with an integrated design process resulting in more amenity space and lower utility costs. The renovations concentrated on energy efficient upgrades including insulation, windows, ventilation, green roof, solar panels and renewable geothermal energy. Funding came from the federal and municipal governments and the Foundation s own fundraising. CMHC also provided Seed Funding and Proposal Development Funding to launch the renewal plan.

8 5. Native Child and Family Services of Toronto: 179 and 184 Dowling Avenue Native Child and Family Services of Toronto operates two houses on Dowling for single, young Aboriginal mothers. They provide a continuum of supports and housing to help clients become more independent, focusing on opportunities for stability, employment, parenting skills and permanent housing. 179 Dowling is home to young mothers in a large rooming house setting with a live-in mentor, part-time support and relief staff. A second home at 184 Dowling, provides longer-term housing in a beautiful house with six self-contained units for more independence. Funding was provided by the Government of Canada through the Homelessness Partnering Strategy and the City of Toronto.

9 6. PARC Edmond Place: 194 Dowling Avenue & 1495 Queen Street West Parkdale Activity Recreation Centre (PARC) has transformed Edmond Place from a derelict, abandoned rooming house into a renewed heritage property with 29 self-contained units. Next door, PARC operates a drop-in community centre where it delivers services and amenities for people with mental health and addiction issues. Edmond Place epitomizes durable, sustainable design, design excellence, safety and security, accessibility, and strong community engagement in its development. Funding was provided by the Canada-Ontario Affordable Housing Program, a 50-year lease from the City of Toronto and a partnership with Habitat Services.

10 7. Ecuhome Corporation: 1387 Queen Street West Founded by seven faith groups in 1984, Ecuhome provides housing and support to people who are chronically homeless or under-housed. It now provides housing and support to over 675 people in its 58 shared houses, an historic rooming house and six apartment buildings. The building at 1387 Queen Street West was acquired in 1999 and houses 24 families. Capital repair money provided in 2010 through the Canada-Ontario Social Housing Renovation and Repair Program has improved building safety to ensure it remains a viable home for many years to come.

11 8. Queen Street West and the West Queen West (WQW) Triangle Neighbourhoods In the past few decades, Queen Street West has begun to gentrify as has the housing in the surrounding neighbourhoods. Although Queen Street, west of Dovercourt, was affected by deinstitutionalization much like Parkdale was, artists, galleries and alternative retailers are putting down roots. Initiatives to revitalize Dundas, College and Dufferin Streets and the Centre for Addictions and Mental Health (CAMH) site have inspired developer and homeowner investments in the area. The restoration of the Gladstone and Drake hotels was a catalyst for the renewed interest in this area. More recently, brownfield lands are being converted into a mix of new market housing and artist live/work space that support the Queen West culture.

12 9. Artscape Triangle Lofts: 150 Sudbury Street Artscape Triangle Lofts is a new condominium development created to preserve artist live / work space in the West Queen West Triangle. The development includes 20 affordable rental homes, 48 below-market ownership homes and two nonprofit professional arts commercial spaces. These are integrated into the lower portion of the 18-storey market condominium tower. The affordable housing was secured through development approvals with the developer, Urbancorp. Additional assistance was provided by the City of Toronto.

13 10. St. Clare s Multifaith Housing: 180 Sudbury Street St. Clare s Multifaith Housing is working in partnership with Verdiroc, a private developer, to build 190 affordable homes in the West Queen West Triangle on former industrial lands. St. Clare s responded to the scarcity of affordable family housing in the city: almost half of the homes in the building are two, three or four bedroom. St. Clare s has created a number of special studio units for artists, some of whom lived in the area before redevelopment occurred. This will be a mixed-income community, with most units renting for 80% of average market rent, while 25% will be geared-to-income. St. Clare s received capital funding from the City of Toronto and the Canada-Ontario Affordable Housing Program. CMHC provided Seed Funding to get the project started.

14 11. Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) Redevelopment A landmark in Toronto s west end, the Queen Street Campus of the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), formerly the Queen Street Mental Health Centre, is undergoing a massive and forward-thinking rebirth. One of the key objectives of the redevelopment of the 27-acre site is to integrate CAMH into the surrounding community by extending local streets into the site, creating three new public parks, and increasing the density of the site with the addition of new non-camh buildings. This vision provides a community environment which adds to the energetic and dynamic Queen Street West neighbourhood. Leasing land to private developers

15 will promote employment opportunities for CAMH clients and contribute to the centre s revenues, helping to finance the redevelopment. CAMH believes this will reduce the lingering stigma of mental health and addiction services to help client recovery. This new approach to the revitalization of the property is in stark contrast to the original site layout as well as the housing and treatment of people living with mental health issues. The original building, the Provincial Lunatic Asylum ( ), was surrounded by high brick walls built by the patients starting in Large portions of the walls have been removed over the years. However, the remainder have been designated an historic site by the City of Toronto.

16 12. Verdiroc Development Corporation: 100 Freedom Street Verdiroc won a proposal call issued by CAMH to lease a prominent site on Queen Street West to build the first non-institutional building. The affordable housing development received funding under Canada s Economic Action Plan, the Province of Ontario and incentives from the City of Toronto. It will become an important gateway into the new urban centre at CAMH with its location at the new Ossington Avenue extension. The eight-storey building will contain 179 new homes, with a mix of one, two and three bedrooms. Tenants will pay less than 80% of the average market rent for Toronto and over 100 homes will be provided for seniors and persons with disabilities. The first floor will have a residential entry plus several retail outlets, adding vibrancy to the south side of Queen Street.

17

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