June 19, 2002

York Region moves closer to constructing seniors supportive housing in Newmarket


NEWMARKET York Region is close to awarding a contract for the construction of 58 self-contained apartments for seniors and people with disabilities at its Newmarket Health Centre, a long-term care facility on Eagle Street.

"The number of seniors is expected to increase by 300 per cent by 2026," said Regional Chair and CEO Bill Fisch. "This project provides a unique opportunity for York Region to develop much-needed affordable rental housing for seniors, as well as disabled adults."

A staff report before York Region's Community Services and Housing Committee today recommends Regional Council award the contract to the lowest responsive and responsible bidder, Torbear Contracting Inc., at the total quotation price of $8,132,000. The quotation also includes office renovations and programming space in the long-term care facility.

"There has been no new social housing built in York Region since 1995," acknowledged Newmarket Mayor Tom Taylor, Chair of York Region's Community Services and Housing Committee. "If approved by Council, the project will assist the Region in meeting its 100-unit target of direct delivery of new social housing units for 2002, which is part of the Region's Housing Supply Strategy."

Total development and construction costs for the seniors apartments to be located in the east wing of the Newmarket Health Centre are estimated at $7.9 million. York Region will contribute $1.5 million towards the project and $2.4 million is expected to be funded through provincial and federal government programs such as the Government of Canada's Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program. The remaining $4.0 million will be funded through debenture financing.

All operating costs will be covered by rental revenue.

The Town of Newmarket has agreed to waive a substantial portion of the standard fees and charges associated with the issuance of a building permit for residential development. This is valued at approximately $37,763.

The Newmarket Health Centre is a not-for-profit facility funded by the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care and York Region and operated by York Region Health Services. The conversion of the east wing is Phase III of the redevelopment of the Centre and scheduled for completion in 2003.

Regional Council will decide on the contract award at its meeting on June 27, 2002

Contact: Wendy Lewis, Corporate Communications Services, York Region

The Regional Municipality of York is committed to providing cost-effective, quality services that respond to the needs of our rapidly growing communities.  York Region is comprised of the following nine area municipalities:  Aurora, East Gwillimbury, Georgina, King, Markham, Newmarket, Richmond Hill, Vaughan and Whitchurch-Stouffville.  For more information, visit our Web site at:  www.region.york.on.ca

Contact: Patrick Casey, Senior Media Relations Specialist, York Region

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