Collaborative effort launched to address housing needs in Collingwood

Ontario Construction News staff writer

The County of Simcoe is partnering with The Common Roof in Collingwood, to support housing needs within the community of Collingwood.

A modular, pre-built housing structure will be placed on The Common Roof property at 199/197 Cambell Street – home to 6 community-based non-profit organizations and groups – to serve as housing for the SRRP program.

The aim is to have the program operational this summer in the temporary structure, and it is anticipated that the program will run for approximately five years in this location. The modular building can house between 10 and 15 people at a time (excluding staff/support teams).

“The County continues to take a proactive, forward-thinking approach to addressing homelessness and housing needs in our communities across the region,” Warden Basil Clarke said in a statement. “The SRRP program has been effective in other communities, supporting individuals in need and the community at large.

Simcoe County’s supportive rapid rehousing program (SRRP) provides services, housing and support to individuals who have fallen on difficult times and helps to place them into permanent housing quickly. Individuals have been identified as situationally homeless (i.e., due to a recent life event, rather than chronically homeless). This SRRP is a temporary home for individuals as they prepare for more independent living situations.

A similar program in the City of Barrie has resulted in many successful outcomes, with no known impact on the surrounding neighbourhood. The County also recently opened a youth-based SRRP program embedded in the City of Orillia. Both these programs have utilized similar modular, pre-built structures.

Collingwood recently completed an Affordable Housing Master Plan (AHMP) in November 2023, which provided the Town a set of 26 recommendations for tackling the housing issue. The Town is committed to collaborating with other levels of government to facilitate affordable housing initiatives that bring much-needed housing to our community.

“We are fortunate that the County of Simcoe is planning to build specialized temporary housing in our community,” said Mayor Yvonne Hamlin. “The focus for this housing is to help those ready to move into permanent housing. Many thanks to The Common Roof for partnering with the County in this project”.