Windsor Selects Site for Permanent Homelessness Housing Hub with 64 Units

Windsor selects 2.8-hectare site for $50M homelessness housing hub, set to open in 3 years. The city will use expropriation to acquire the property, aiming to provide comprehensive social services for the community.

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Sakchi Khandelwal
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Windsor Selects Site for Permanent Homelessness Housing Hub with 64 Units

Windsor Selects Site for Permanent Homelessness Housing Hub with 64 Units

The City of Windsor has chosen a 2.8-hectare property at 700 Wellington Avenue as the location for a permanent homelessness housing hub. The hub will feature 64 one-bedroom units and various amenities to support individuals experiencing homelessness in the community.

The city reviewed 200 properties and expressions of interest from four property owners before selecting the Wellington Avenue site. The property meets key factors identified in a report by Glos Associates Inc., including being within a two-kilometer radius of the downtown core, on a major transit route, and large enough to accommodate additional housing units and social services.

Windsor's commissioner of human and health services, Andrew Daher, called the selection a 'significant advancement' for the community. The city initially attempted to negotiate the purchase of the site but was unsuccessful, and will now use expropriation to advance the process. The expropriation process could take six months or longer.

The city has set aside $20 million for the project, with plans to seek additional funding from senior levels of government. The total cost of the hub is expected to be around $50 million, pre-inflation. The transitional housing hub is expected to open in a minimum of 3 years.

Why this matters: The establishment of the permanent homelessness housing hub is critical to reducing long-term homelessness in Windsor and providing comprehensive social services in one location. The hub will offer a range of services, including health, housing, homelessness supports, mental health, and addiction support, to help individuals experiencing homelessness in the community.

The city intends to contact potential partners for the establishment of the housing hub and ancillary services. The existing hub at the former Windsor Water World has seen an increase in the number of people seeking help, up to 215 daily, and now includes justice and health supports. Ward 2 Councillor Fabio Costante and Ward 3 Councillor Renaldo Agostino, whose wards are impacted by the hub's location, have expressed support for the project as a way to address the city's homelessness issue, despite some concerns about the location and the need for expropriation.

Key Takeaways

  • Windsor selects 2.8-hectare site for 64-unit homelessness housing hub.
  • Hub to offer health, housing, mental health, and addiction support services.
  • City to use expropriation to acquire the property, a process that could take 6+ months.
  • Project cost estimated at $50 million, with $20 million set aside by the city.
  • Hub expected to open in a minimum of 3 years, addressing Windsor's homelessness issue.