County of Simcoe breaks ground on Orillia campus

The campus will include 130 mixed affordable residential units

News Release – County of Simcoe

The County of Simcoe has officially broken ground on the County Orillia Campus Project, marking the start of construction for this important affordable housing and community hub infrastructure intended to service the Orillia area. The multi-generational hub development is designed to include 130 mixed affordable residential units which will house seniors, families and individuals. It will also include a number of community services, primarily on the ground level with resources and supports including Ontario Works, Children Services, Social Housing offices, and community agency stakeholders.

“County Council has been proud to support this project, which will ensure that 130 seniors, families, and individuals have a comfortable place to live. The County Orillia Campus Project is one that we know the community will be able to look to as a sign of hope and pride in what we are able to accomplish when we all work together for the greater good,” said George Cornell, County of Simcoe Warden.

“As we work to surpass our 10-year housing targets, we’re proud to invest in affordable housing across the County, with multiple impactful projects in the north, south, east and west completed, underway or planned in the years to come.”

The affordable housing component of this site will provide increased access to affordable housing for households from across the area, with the maximum rents capped at 80 per cent of average market rates as determined by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. This innovative hub model, implemented successfully at other County affordable housing developments, will help to alleviate barriers to accessing essential community and social services, with a variety of support programs on-site for residents and those living in the broader community. The design also incorporates elements that pay tribute to the site’s heritage, including a memorial arboretum featuring a cupola from the original ODCVI building, kindly donated to the project by Orillia Councillor Ralph Cipolla.

“Orillia is experiencing a remarkable increase in demand for affordable housing and Council has been looking forward to seeing this important project come to fruition,” said Orillia Mayor Steve Clarke.

“The multi-generational hub located on the former ODCVI property will increase the number of affordable housing units in our area, which we are in critical need of, and will provide access to important services our community relies on. As a key partner in this project and throughout the development approval process, Orillia is proud to work with the County to address the need for affordable housing, especially amidst rising house and rent prices.”

In line with the existing funding formula, the County of Simcoe will provide $55M towards the project. The City of Orillia’s contribution is estimated at $4.15M, with additional funding from other partners.