July 26th, 2019

Jagmeet Singh Wants Waterfront Property Sale Stopped

Singh in Toronto fighting for more affordable housing.

TORONTO – NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh and NDP Candidate for Spadina—Fort York, Diana Yoon, were at Toronto’s waterfront on Friday calling on Trudeau’s Liberals to halt the sale of prime federally owned land for the construction of luxury condominiums.

The land, says Singh, should be used to help ease the affordable missing-middle housing crunch instead.

“Too many people in Toronto are struggling every month with the cost of housing,” said Singh. “They’re stuck in a place that’s too expensive, overcrowded, or even unsafe — and can’t find or can’t afford a decent home to move their families into. Trudeau’s Liberals give lip service to the housing crisis, then turn around and sell this federal property to developers to build expensive fancy condominiums for the richest of the rich. Trudeau has a little piece of the solution in his hands — and he’s handing it over to developers.”

The 1.2-acre site at 200 Queens Quay West, across from the Harbourfront Centre, is now being marketed by Canada Lands Company for private residential development. The Crown Corporation says that the site has the “potential to support a landmark two-tower development featuring a 55- and 45-storey tower above a 10-storey podium.” There will be no requirement that the development include any affordable housing.

Meanwhile, more than 100,000 households are on the social housing waiting list in Toronto — more people waiting than are living in the available affordable homes.

"Torontonians are feeling squeezed by the high cost of housing - even as we work harder and harder to pay rent and survive in an increasingly unaffordable city," said Yoon. “Justin Trudeau and the Liberals talk a good game about housing, but as soon as the microphones are off, Trudeau does what’s best for the developers instead of doing what’s best for our community.”

The NDP’s New Deal for People commits to create 500,000 units of quality, affordable housing in the next 10 years, with half of that done within five years. Working in partnership with provinces and municipalities, the New Deal will build capacity for social, community, and affordable housing providers and co-ops, prioritize affordable housing when federal lands are sold, and help meet bold environmental and energy efficiency goals.This is the body of this article. It's important to be concise and clear. Most readers read for seven seconds or less; that's less than 100 words before moving on.

Facts

  • 34 per cent of people living in Toronto report spending more than one third of their income to pay for housing[1].
  • Toronto alone has 102,049 people on the wait list for subsidized housing[2].
  • In order to afford an average two-bedroom apartment on nearby Bay Street, a person would need to work full-time and make $73.17 an hour[3].
  • A minimum-wage worker would have to work a 79-hour week to afford an average one-bedroom apartment in Toronto, and a 96-hour week for a two-bedroom apartment[4].
  • The NDP’s proposed federal investment would begin with $5 billion in additional funding in the first year and a half.

[1] Ratesupermarket.ca. “Four in Ten Renters are Overspending on Housing in Canada, Survey,” June 2019. https://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/four-in-ten-renters-are-overspending-on-housing-in-canada-survey-816818392.html
[2] City of Toronto. “Social Housing Waiting List Reports,” 2019 Total Active Applications, Q1. https://www.toronto.ca/city-government/data-research-maps/research-reports/housing-and-homelessness-research-and-reports/social-housing-waiting-list-reports/
[3] MacDonald, David. “Unaccomodating: Rental Housing Wage in Canada,” Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, July 2019, p. 5. https://www.policyalternatives.ca/unaccommodating
[4] Ibid.