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Calgary prioritizing Indigenous organizations in latest round of affordable housing land sales


Five city-owned sites will be sold at a discount to non-profits, with an emphasis on Indigenous organizations, to help support the development of affordable housing projects throughout Calgary.

The City of Calgary will be selling five pieces of land at below-market value to eligible non-profit organizations under its Non-Market Housing Land Sale program.

"We know that Calgary is experiencing a housing crisis," said Mayor Jyoti Gondek.

"One in five households are unable to afford where they currently live."

For this round of the program, the city is opening the application window to Indigenous organizations first, before opening it up to a general application period for all non-profit affordable housing providers.

Each site will receive funding of up to $75,000 per door from the federal Housing Accelerator Fund, to help support quick construction.

The city expects the sale of the sites will create up to 290 new non-market homes.

The five sites are located in Crescent Heights, Haysboro, Erin Woods, Erlton and Shaganappi.

“City lands are sold below market value to give non-profit organizations the opportunity to develop affordable housing at a discounted rate. This reduces the land cost for non-profit organizations who can turn the savings into more support for affordable housing programs or services,” the city said in a news release.

This is the fourth time the city has offered lands as part of the program, which has helped develop nearly 400 homes for Calgarians in need, according to the city.

The application window is open for Indigenous organizations from March 18 to April 25. Then the general application window opens for all other housing organizations from May 27 to July 4.

Successful applicants will have up to four years to construct the housing, including the approval and community engagement process.

The program is welcome news for Kim Gillespie, one of the many Calgarians struggling to keep up with rising rental costs in the city, but it's also not going to help people like her right now.

"My rent has increased almost $900 in one year. There's another lady here her's just went up $800," Gillespie said Monday.

"It is discouraging. It's frustrating."

She's now trying to find more somewhere to live that's more affordable. More supply, whenever it may happen, can't come soon enough, she says.

"You want to do what you can to do for yourself. However, when the money's not there, you're basically treading water and your head is going down and down and down," she said. Top Stories

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