Annual Report feature: TCHC secures historic nine-year investment to renew and repair buildings
2019 was a truly historic year for TCHC, as we secured a nine-year, $1.34-billion investment from the federal government’s National Housing Strategy and a permanent annual allocation of $160 million for capital repairs from the City of Toronto.
This record-level of investment bolstered our building capital repair plan. We delivered a $313.1-million program in 2019 as part of our 10-year plan to improve living conditions, safety, accessibility and comfort for tenants and make our buildings more energy efficient.
The federal investment is the largest of its kind in Canada’s history. It underscores our important social and economic value as Canada’s largest landlord. The federal contribution of $116 million in 2019 funded improvements to more
than 11,000 units, benefitting over 21,000 tenants across the city.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Toronto Mayor John Tory announced the co-investment fund on April 5 at the Adanac Apartments in Scarborough. Prior to the announcement, the Prime Minister and Mayor spoke with members of the tenant-led Responsible Personal Accessibility in Toronto Housing (R-PATH) Committee, a major partner in improving accessibility in all tenants’ homes and buildings.
TCHC is a strong and innovative leader in improving accessibility, as reflected in the $400 million for accessibility improvements earmarked in the co-investment fund. This increased investment enables the leading-edge work already being done by TCHC and R-PATH to continue.
Under the co-investment fund, projects must reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions by 25 per cent. Through our building capital renewal plan and other programs, we making existing and future buildings more energy efficient, through retrofits or sustainable design principles.
Examples of energy retrofits include:
- Replacing building heating and cooling systems, equipment and associated sub-components to improve ventilation and air quality
- Upgrading windows, exterior doors, plumbing fixtures and lighting systems, including converting to LED lighting systems, controls and sensors
- Upgrading, repairing and remediating the building envelope and balconies
Using co-investment fund dollars, retrofits are bringing components and systems in our buildings up to current energy standards. We are going beyond “like for like” replacement by using new products and innovative technologies that modernize buildings, save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Passive House project
As part of the Alexandra Park revitalization, we launched an innovative project in 2019 with our developer partner Tridel to build 12 townhomes using a "passive house” design. It’s the first project in the Greater Toronto Area to build homes using passive house principles, which can reduce energy usage by more than 90 per cent.
Enbridge Gas rebate
In July, TCHC received a $1.6-million rebate from Enbridge Gas based on 36 energy-efficiency upgrade projects
we had completed throughout 2018. This is the largest rebate Enbridge has given through its affordable housing energy efficiency program. The combined cost avoidance in natural gas consumption exceeded $524,000. Those savings are a key part of our commitment to reducing our energy costs.