Toronto

Ontario invests nearly $43M to retrofit social housing in Toronto

Ontario is investing $42.9 million to retrofit some of Toronto's social housing complexes, providing homeowners with energy efficient boilers, insulation and windows.

City of Toronto staff will decide which buildings will be retrofitted

Toronto Mayor John Tory, Ontario Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Ted McMeekin, Ontario Minister of the Environment and Climate Change Glen Murray announced the province will give the city nearly $43 million to retrofit social housing. (CBC News)

Ontario is investing $42.9 million to retrofit some of Toronto's social housing complexes, providing homeowners with energy efficient boilers, insulation and windows.

The investment is more than half the amount — a total of $82 million — set aside to retrofit social housing in other parts of the province.

The money comes from a $325-million fund the province set up as a "down payment" on future revenues from its cap-and-trade plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

"Greenhouse gas emissions from buildings are one of the most significant contributors to climate change in Ontario," Glen Murray, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, said in a press release. "This investment will help Toronto reduce greenhouse gas emissions while enhancing the quality of life for low-income Ontarians."

The province expects to retrofit 35-50 of Ontario's social housing apartment towers through the program. Municipal staff will decide which buildings will be retrofitted in Toronto.

"These kinds of improvements, while simple, will create significant energy savings — savings that will allow providers like Toronto Community Housing direct funds towards other priorities," Ted McMeekin, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, said at a press conference Wednesday.

Mayor John Tory said the investment will conserve energy and improve living conditions for social housing residents. 

"We all know something as simple as bad windows can have a number of negative environmental impacts, but they also create drafty and less humane conditions for people," he told reporters. 

Ontario announced a $100-million program in February to help homeowners upgrade their furnaces, water heaters and insulation.

CBC News first revealed the program was in the works in December 2015.

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