Investing in TCHC revitalization and repairs creates jobs, spurs economic growth

Investing in TCHC revitalization and repairs creates jobs, spurs economic growth

March 30, 2015

Repairing Toronto Community Housing buildings and revitalizing TCHC communities will create 220,000 employment years of new jobs, spur some $5 billion in private investment and generate $4.5 billion in federal and provincial taxes, says a new study prepared by the Canadian Centre for Economic Analysis.​

The study found that the work being undertaken by TCHC to improve the homes and communities of its residents will also create an additional $18.5 billion in GDP over the next 30 years, $12.6 billion of it in the GTA. Some 68 per cent of this impact will occur in the first 10 years of TCHC's capital plan, which is now underway.

"The study provides compelling evidence on the urgent need for all levels of government to invest in repairing and revitalizing our public housing assets," Mayor Tory said. "The economic and social benefits of increased investment are significant and far reaching. However, if we continue to fall behind, we are faced with very real, and very troubling, social costs."

"This shows that providing TCHC residents with good housing benefits everyone," said Councillor Ana Bailão (Ward 18 Davenport), City Housing Advocate and Chair, Affordable Housing Committee. "That's why we need Ottawa and Queen's Park to step up, not back, and provide their fair share of TCHC's $2.6 billion repair bill."

"Investing in repairing our homes will give our residents the clean, safe, well-maintained homes that every person in Toronto deserves," said TCHC Interim President and CEO Greg Spearn. "The work we are doing now through our 2015 capital plan is already making a difference in our communities."

The economic lift comes from the nearly $5 billion-worth of revitalization work now underway in communities such as Regent Park and Lawrence Heights plus the $2.6 billion TCHC needs to invest over 10 years in capital repairs to its aging buildings.
The study also says improving housing conditions for TCHC​​ residents will save $3.8 billion in health costs.​ It will prevent a 15-per-cent increase in crime rates in neighbourhoods and cut TCHC's greenhouse gas emissions by nine per cent.

The City has committed $864 million for the repairs and asked the federal and provincial governments to do the same. The study says that for their combined $1.7 billion investment, Ottawa and Queen's Park would reap $4.5 billion in taxes alone.

TCHC is investing a record $175 million this year in capital repairs, including replacing roofs, boilers and elevators, which will create an estimated 2,300 jobs. This follows on TCHC's successful 2014 capital program, which included over 500 large-scale capital repair projects in 261 developments across the city, representing 70 per cent of the TCHC portfolio.

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Media contacts:

Keerthana Kamalavasan, Office of the Mayor

Sara Goldvine, Toronto Community Housing

Gil Hardy, Affordable Housing Office