Blue Door and EllisDon Community Builders lead the way in creating deeply affordable housing for people experiencing homelessness
Blue Door, in partnership with EllisDon Community Builders, is stepping up to address the rising need for affordable housing in York Region. Together, these leaders are redeveloping a 100-year-old home on an underutilized property in Newmarket to create a 14-unit three-story stacked townhouse offering dignified, accessible, and affordable housing. Set to begin construction in the summer of 2024, Blue Door and EllisDon Community Builders are currently seeking design-builders interested in doing social good and expanding into affordable housing, with expressions of interest due January 12th.
Nick Gefucia, Vice President of EllisDon Community Builders shares, “It's exciting to work with Blue Door as their development manager partner. They have a wealth of experience and devise creative housing, health and employment strategies to tackle homelessness. We are looking for similarly committed design-builders who want to work with EllisDon Community Builders to support Blue Door's vision. The company we select will make a significant contribution to the Newmarket community and distinguish itself among York Region's quality home builders."
The redevelopment of Blue Door’s Newmarket property called Kevin’s Place will model how to rethink land use and create urgently needed affordable housing strategically.
Right now, Canada is experiencing an affordable housing crisis, with people from all backgrounds and circumstances struggling to find safe and dignified accommodations. In York Region alone, on any given night over 300 individuals experience homelessness, 20% of whom are families.
Additionally, on average, residents in the GTA spend roughly 43% of their annual earnings on housing-related costs, which includes mortgage, rent, and utilities. This number far exceeds the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s benchmark, which considers housing to be “affordable” when no more than 30% of pre-tax income is dedicated to housing or rental expenses.
“Providing safe and affordable housing for those most in need is becoming more and more challenging and the need is, unfortunately, growing,” shares Newmarket Mayor John Taylor. “All levels of government and the not-for-profit community must embrace every opportunity to build and provide more housing options whenever and wherever we can. Newmarket has always believed in housing options for everyone and we will always be there to support others in their quest to address the housing crisis.”
With compounding factors attributing to long-term and ongoing homelessness, people in our community need a more sustainable option for housing - and they need it now.
“The affordable housing crisis is a complex challenge and demands immediate, and collaborative solutions,” says Michael Braithwaite, CEO of Blue Door a leader in creating innovative programs that address and prevent homelessness. “With the announcement earlier this year of a $4 billion investment in affordable housing from the Government of Canada, we urge community leaders, non-profit organizations, and developers to get involved in projects and initiatives, such as the Kevin’s Place redevelopment, to make housing more accessible and affordable to all Canadians.”
Currently, on the property owned by Blue Door, sits a 100-year-old house on a large piece of land. Blue Door is seeking to have this underutilized 100-year-old property redeveloped into a 14-unit stacked townhouse building, with associated parking and walkway areas.
Providing accessible and affordable housing, the redevelopment will help to reduce homelessness by supporting and enabling individuals and families to successfully transition into more permanent housing options. Occupants could be families, seniors, or youth – who can live independently, many of whom are employed, yet still can’t afford market rent.
As part of the redevelopment, the design-builder will assist in the site plan application process while leading the design phases, building permit application, construction and closeout, as well as occupancy permit application. It is expected the work will commence in early 2024.
Design-builders interested in building their affordable housing portfolio, being part of the housing solution, and working with two community leaders, Blue Door and EllisDon Community Builders, are encouraged to visit Merx.com and submit an expression of interest
To learn more about Kevin’s Place and Blue Door’s vision that this deeply affordable housing represents, visit www.BlueDoor.ca
About Blue Door
Blue Door has been serving the York Region community for over 40 years, providing supports including housing, health, and employment for families, adults, children, and youth that are experiencing or at risk of homelessness. For more information about Blue Door, please visit www.BlueDoor.ca
About EllisDon Community Builders
EllisDon Community Builders integrates design, construction, financing, operation and maintenance expertise to help clients develop affordable and supportive accommodation nationwide. EllisDon has led or is currently leading the development of over 1,200 affordable residential units across Canada, totaling approximately 1.2 million square feet, across various built-forms and with a capital cost over $400 million. www.CommunityBuilders.EllisDon.com
Organization Contact for Media Inquiries:
Rachael Sedman, Director of Resource Development at Blue Door 905-955-9901 | firstname.lastname@example.org
For Quotes or an Interview, please contact:
Michael Braithwaite, Chief Executive Officer at Blue Door 647-888-6521 | email@example.com
18838 Highway 11, East Gwillimbury, ON, L9N 0C5
Charitable Registration Number: 1305 71896 RR0001