Timeline unchanged to open temporary homeless shelter in Barrie: County

Shelter structure will be modular

The County of Simcoe says a proposed temporary homeless shelter on Rose Street in Barrie is still on track.

“The County is pleased to confirm that the work to acquire a temporary shelter is nearing completion. Our supplier has confirmed their ability to deliver and prepare the shelter for occupancy by November 15, pending inspections of units and receipt of municipal approvals. The County also continues to work with our partners at the City of Barrie on by-law requirements and details related to utility connections,” Warden George Cornell said in an email statement to Barrie 360.

The property is located on the site of the former Barrie OPP detachment in the area of Bayfield Street and Highway 400.

“The temporary shelter will provide an additional 50 shelter beds for the city and surrounding communities (currently there are 202 shelter beds in the City of Barrie),” Cornell said. “I can’t thank our County staff and our partners at the City of Barrie enough for their commitment and passion to move this project forward and help our vulnerable residents. Homelessness and housing affordability impact the entire region, and projects such as this temporary shelter initiative, warming centres and affordable housing developments occurring across Simcoe County are only possible when our communities work together to pool resources, ideas and funding.”

The County announced on Monday the structure selected for the shelter is modular and very little site work will need to be completed prior to the delivery.

Image supplied: County of Simcoe

“This modular structure will arrive 98 per cent complete and can be placed on the site as-is and simply connect to local utilities as needed. In other words, a turnkey solution,” said Cornell. “When it arrives on site, it includes its own services, not dependant on external hydro and gas to ensure it can quickly accommodate clientele. City services will be used for water and sewer, but power and heat will be provided by a whisper generator and propane. The modular nature will enable the County to transport and utilize the building in other locations, should needs arise in the future.

In addition to the temporary shelter, Corneell said the County is currently delivering additional projects including the warming centre in the City of Barrie.

“More permanent builds for those who have experienced chronic homelessness in the City of Barrie include the supportive housing project at Tiffin Street (14 beds), additional capacity at Lucy’s Place (6 beds), and the future development of a larger affordable housing build on Rose Street, with a projected 150 new apartments for seniors, families, and individuals.”

The affordable housing project is due to be completed in 2024.

Banner image: Supplied by County of Simcoe