Dorion’s Harwood revitalization project
PHOTO BY JOHN JANTAK
Vaudreuil-Dorion Mayor Guy Pilon announced at the Monday evening council meeting that the city will acquire land for the eventual construction of 42 subsidized housing units on Route de Lotbinière as part of the Harwood Avenue revitalization project.
The City of Vaudreuil-Dorion has confirmed during the Monday evening council meeting on July 6 that affordable subsidized housing units will be built as part of the Harwood Avenue revitalization project. Mayor Guy Pilon said that while the city will not be directly involved in the construction project, it will acquire a piece of land on Route de Lotbinière that will be used by the Société d’habitation abordable de Vaudreuil- Soulanges to build 42 subsidized units.
Pilon said the city’s role is not to be a part of the construction project, but to acquire the land for the Société and to ensure the development conforms to various aspects regarding proposed green spaces and parking spots. As the supply of affordable housing continues to dwindle throughout the region, Pilon said there’s an increasing demand for subsidized units that would help people living on fixed incomes such as seniors to help rein in their expenditures.
“The project will be perfect for this sector,” Pilon told Your Local Journal in a telephone interview. “It isn’t intended for people who are on welfare but for people who live on fixed incomes and are having difficulty finding an apartment they can afford,” said Pilon. “These units are meant to help regular families and couples who want to live in the area but cannot afford to pay rents of $1,000 to $2,000 a month,” Pilon added. “The subsidized units will be about $700 to $800 a month.”
The Harwood area near Highway 20 is still one of the more affordable areas in the city where prospective tenants can rent apartments that range in price from between $600 to $800 a month. Pilon stressed that one important factor is that while the city will purchase the land, the cost will be almost entirely reimbursed by the Communauté Métropolitaine de Montréal (CMM) which sets aside funds for various subsidized housing projects in municipalities under its jurisdiction.
“Each year, the CMM contributes money to a fund to build subsidized housing within the 82 towns it administers,” said Pilon. “The Société has proposed a specific number of units and we want the money from the CMM to go to this project.” No precise date was given when construction will begin, but Pilon anticipates it will start sometime next year.
“I think it’s fair to say that if everything goes well, construction will begin in the fall of 2016” said Pilon. Additional subsidized housing projects are possible in the future, but Pilon said discussions with developers will be required to determine which parcels of land would be suitable for development. “We’ll have to wait and see,” said Pilon. “We want to make sure that people who live in this area will be able to afford it,” Pilon added. “People will be able to buy a townhouse or condo but for people who live in apartments, we want to make sure that they’ll have decent apartments at a decent price.”