Work starts on new social housing project for low-income single moms in Laval

Twenty-three new units to be built on Dumouchel Ave. near city’s centre

Laval-area officials from the federal, provincial and municipal governments gathered with local community representatives last week on Dumouchel Ave. in central Laval to mark the start of work on the new Avenir de femmes housing project, which is being led by the Bureau d’aide et d’assistance familiale Place Saint-Martin.

A three-way deal

The 23-unit building has been designed for low-income single mothers in Laval. The project represents a total investment of more than $10.1 million from the three levels of government.

“This project marks a new era for the Place Saint-Martin neighbourhood,” said Martin Badia, president of the Bureau d’aide et d’assistance familiale Place Saint-Martin, which will be welcoming the housing project’s first tenants as early as winter 2023.

From the left, Bureau d’aide et d’assistance familiale Place Saint-Martin president Martin Badia, Laval city councillor Sandra El Helou, Sainte-Rose MNA Christopher Skeete, Laval-Les Îles MP Fayçal El-Khoury and Laval-des-Rapides MNA Saul Polo did the honours turning the first soil for the future Avenir de femmes housing project on Dumouchel Ave. in central Laval. (Photo: Martin C. Barry, Newsfirst Multimedia)

Meeting local needs

He said the project “will not only provide better prospects for many single-parent families, but also perpetuate the presence of our organization in the neighbourhood, which will be better equipped to meet the needs of the community.”

“Safe and affordable housing is essential to the health and prosperity of communities,” said Laval-Les Îles Liberal MP Fayçal El-Khoury.

“Today’s announcement is another step toward addressing the housing crisis. Through the Rapid Housing Initiative, we are expanding the supply of affordable housing for women and their children right here in Laval.”

A better quality of life

“I congratulate the Bureau d’aide et d’assistance familiale Place Saint-Martin for this wonderful initiative that will help single mothers regain an active place in their community,” said Sainte-Rose CAQ MNA Christopher Skeete. “This investment clearly demonstrates our intention to improve the quality of life of citizens across the Laval area.”

“The City of Laval is pleased with the development of the Avenir de femmes housing project, which aims to promote the provision of a housing supply adapted to the needs of the Laval population, including vulnerable people,” said Laval city councillor for Souvenir-Labelle Sandra El-Helou, who is responsible for the status of women, youth and seniors on the executive-committee.

Improving local conditions

El Helou said access to affordable housing “is one of our administration’s priorities, and this project is a concrete example of what we can do to sustainably improve the housing conditions of Laval residents.”

‘This project is a concrete example of what we can do to sustainably improve the housing conditions of Laval residents,’ said Sandra El Helou

The Société d’habitation du Québec (SHQ), through its AccèsLogis Québec program, is contributing more than $4.8 million, including $2 million as part of the Canada-Quebec Agreement under the federal government’s Rapid Housing Initiative.

As well as securing the organization’s mortgage loan, the SHQ will provide additional assistance to help tenants pay their rent by providing a rent supplement. For its part, the City of Laval is providing more than $1.2 million for the construction of the building.

Further phases expected

The construction of the new social housing units will make it possible to implement phases I and II of the Implantation d’Avenir de femmes project, which is being carried out thanks to more than $235,000 in funding from the City of Laval and the Government of Quebec.

The Fonds québécois d’initiatives sociales (FQIS), under the Alliances pour la solidarité and in collaboration with the Ministère du Travail, de l’Emploi et de la Solidarité sociale, also contributed to the agreement.

Some project highlights

  • All the tenants will benefit from the SHQ’s Rent Supplement Program, ensuring that they will not spend more than 25 per cent of their income on housing. This additional assistance of more than $395,000 over five years is assumed by the SHQ (90 per cent) and the City of Laval (10 per cent).

The Bureau d’aide et d’assistance familiale Place Saint-Martin also received over $448,000 in financial assistance from the SHQ’s Rénovation Québec program.