Government of Canada Joins Bethlehem Projects in Celebrating the Opening of 40 New Affordable Housing Units in Niagara Falls

June 21, 2010


Niagara Falls, ON
– The Government of Canada, the Government of Ontario, Niagara Region, the City of Niagara Falls, Niagara Regional Housing, and Bethlehem Projects of Niagara celebrated the official opening of a new affordable housing apartment complex in Niagara Falls. This 40-unit housing project is supported by $2.8 million in funding through the Canada-Ontario Affordable Housing Program. 

The Honourable Rob Nicholson, P.C., Q.C., Member of Parliament for Niagara Falls, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC); Kim Craitor, Member of Provincial Parliament for Niagara Falls, on behalf of Jim Bradley, Ontario’s Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing; Peter Partington, Niagara Regional Chairman; Ted Salci, Mayor of Niagara Falls and Tom Kelcey, Chair of Bethlehem Housing Steering Committee, attended the event. 

“The Government of Canada is dedicated to helping Canadians through tough economic times,” said Minister Nicholson. “Through projects like Bethlehem, our government is providing safe affordable housing for many residents in our community while creating jobs and stimulating the economy of Niagara Falls.”

“The Ontario government is pleased to have helped build affordable housing that will improve the lives of 40 individuals and families,” said MPP Craitor.  “I would like to congratulate the developer, the city and the region for making this project a reality.”  

The 40-unit project, located at 6185 Kalar Road, received more than $2.8 million funded through the Canada-Ontario Affordable Housing Program.  The federal and provincial funding is complemented by $254,000 in municipal financial incentives.

“This project further demonstrates the commitment of Niagara Region in working with our government counterparts and community partners in ensuring that our residents who are most in need of assistance have access to sustainable and affordable housing in our communities,” said Peter Partington, Niagara Regional Chairman.  

"Opening the doors of Bethlehem Place is a great victory in the fight against homelessness in our City.  It is our priority to care for our residents in need and this exciting partner project has achieved results for the people in our community who need a safe, affordable place to live,” said Mayor Salci.  “Thank you to all our partners including the Federal, Provincial and Regional Governments.”


 “Thanks to all levels of government, community partners and those who gave so generously to our capital campaign, 40 families now have a decent, safe and affordable place to live in Niagara Falls.” said Tom Kelcey, Chair of Bethlehem Housing Steering Committee. “The completion and opening of our second permanent, affordable, apartment building in the Niagara Region, which combines residential and community support services, is testament to the hard work and dedication of those associated with Bethlehem Projects. It has been my pleasure to work with members of the Housing Steering Committee whose support ensured the success of this project.” 

The Canada-Ontario Affordable Housing Program Agreement comprises a commitment of $301 million from each of the two senior levels of government.  In total, the federal, provincial and municipal governments will invest at least $734 million in the program, which will provide affordable housing for up to 20,000 households in Ontario.

In 2008, the Government of Canada committed more than $1.9 billion over five years to improve and build new affordable housing and to help the homeless. Canada's Economic Action Plan builds on this with an additional one-time investment of more than $2 billion over two years in new and existing social housing and up to another $2 billion in loans to municipalities for housing-related infrastructure.  Combined for Ontario, this means a further $1.2 billion joint investment under the amended Canada-Ontario Affordable Housing Program Agreement.  The federal and provincial governments are contributing equally to this overall investment.

In 2009, Ontario allocated a combined federal and provincial investment of $704 million for the renovation of social housing, and $540 million for the construction of new affordable housing.  This investment is part of the Open Ontario plan, and will generate an estimated 23,000 jobs over the course of the program, while strengthening local economies across the province.  To date, Ontario has approved more than $465 million for construction-ready projects, which will provide affordable housing for low-income families, senior citizens, and persons with disabilities, and $351.9 million for repairs benefiting some 148,000 social housing units. 

To find out more about how the Government of Canada and CMHC are working to build stronger homes and communities for all Canadians, call CMHC at 1-800-668-2642 or visit www.cmhc.ca/housingactionplan.  For more information on Canada’s Economic Action Plan, call 1-800-O Canada or visit www.actionplan.gc.ca.