Winnipeg getting $12.5M from feds for rapid housing initiative

WINNIPEG — The City of Winnipeg will be getting $12.5 million from the federal government to build housing for the city’s homeless population.

On Tuesday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau launched the new Rapid Housing Initiative, which will spend $1 billion to build 3,000 permanent affordable housing units across Canada.

According to the federal government, this initiative will build modular multi-unit rentals, convert buildings into affordable housing, and rehabilitate abandoned or run-down buildings into affordable multi-residential homes.

“No Canadian should ever be without a place to call home,” Trudeau said in a news release. “By making smart and substantial investments in affordable housing and providing funding directly to municipalities, we’re creating jobs, strengthening our communities across the country, and helping the most vulnerable.”

The City of Winnipeg is one of 15 major cities across Canada to receive funding under the new initiative.

This is funding for which Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman said he has been advocating directly to the prime minister.

“Today’s announcement of $12.5 million in support to the City of Winnipeg is a direct result of that advocacy,” Bowman said in a written statement.

“I want to thank Prime Minister Trudeau for his ongoing support for housing and, particularly, what this support will do for those experiencing homelessness.”

Bowman said the city’s public service will be working with the federal government to finalize the agreement. He said the city will be working with End Homelessness Winnipeg and the Winnipeg Housing Rehabilitation Corporation to recommend projects for the funding.

He said the public service will be submitting a report with the recommendations to Winnipeg City Council.

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