With a vision to provide as much affordable housing to as many people as possible in the City of Greater Sudbury and beyond, on November 23rd, 2022, the Our House | Notre Maison Coalition of private and public sector partners, led by Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North (OGN) and Soublière Constructors, were welcomed by the team at the MetaLinga Modular Home factory in Arnprior, ON.
“We are investigating options that will allow us to move beyond the traditional Habitat model of building one or two homes at a time, toward a model that builds as many homes as we can in as short a timeframe as possible. This will help us address the needs of marginalized groups while also being part of the solution to the affordable housing crisis overall,” says Habitat OGN CEO, Kimberley Woodcock.
Habitat Director of Community Partnerships, Michael Cullen, has been working with Soublière Constructors President Karsh Singh over the past several months to build the coalition that now includes experts from construction, architecture, finance, economic development, all levels of government, not-for-profits from various sectors, and representatives from the many agencies and groups that could be the ultimate beneficiaries of Habitat for Humanity homes.
“We’ve been given a mandate to innovate, starting in the City of Greater Sudbury. This is an exciting time, and the energy in the room was crackling with ideas and possibilities,” says Habitat Director of Community Partnerships, Michael Cullen.
“We knew going in that this initiative would require broad, nonpartisan support and a commitment to a common goal with Habitat for Humanity as our ‘glue’,” affirms Soublière President Singh. “The talent and commitment around the table is a recipe for action that is growing by the day.”
The MetaLinga Modular facility in Arnprior specializes in multi-storey commercial and residential building systems, park models, and Health Canada approved rapid deployment emergency care and clinics, and will soon feature Accessory Dwelling Units including coach homes, laneway homes, and modular homes.
According to Ms. Woodcock, some of the questions currently before the coalition include:
- How might we build more quickly and efficiently?
- Could we, in partnership with a company like MetaLinga, develop a local space to assemble the homes, and provide skills training, apprenticeship, and employment opportunities?
- How do we involve local subcontractors?
- How many homes are possible with the right land in the right location?
“We are still putting the elements in place, but the goal is to implement a business model that is sustainable for years to come,” concludes Habitat OGN’s Michael Cullen.
Ms. Woodcock adds, “We’re dreaming big, and discovering that, with the right partners, the distance from dream to reality may not be such a leap.”
Organizations looking to become involved may contact Michael Cullen directly at email@example.com or 705-929-9892