GTA Builders’ Association ranks Barrie among the best in providing affordable housing

Study says Barrie City Hall's approval process is faster, more transparent, and cheaper than most

The City of Barrie’s ability to provide affordable housing has received some recognition.

A study released by the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) in Toronto indicates Barrie is the most efficient, helpful, and cost-effective municipality across the Greater Toronto Area for getting new housing developments approved. This finding comes via several factors including ranking its approval process on transparency and availability of resources, the time it takes for projects to get approved and ready for construction, and the cost to developers to build within the municipality.

“Keeping approval costs and timelines down makes it easier to get affordable housing built and fights high rents and housing prices, a key priority of Council,” said Mayor Jeff Lehman. “It also helps power our economy as we navigate COVID-19.” Barrie’s jobless rate took less a hit than the majority of the province during the COVID-19 turndown, with many pointing at the construction industry for helping the city weather the storm further.

The municipal benchmark study conducted by the BILD also indicates Barrie has had one of the highest jumps in new rental housing developments throughout the GTA. It also points out regions like Peel, Toronto, and York are seeing young adults in the 25-44 age range move away, while the County of Simcoe is seeing an increase of people from that demographic moving in.