Ottawa Community Housing Corporation (OCH) has announced planned $30.5 million capital investment to its housing portfolio. The announcement took place June 15 at Vachon Place, one of the OCH buildings that benefited from this year’s investment.
Melanie Chretien, OCH’s manager of corporate communications, says some of the 450 individual projects have already started and some are completed.
“Different timelines for projects have been set,” she said. “Some are still being drafted and some are unknown. Mostly because some projects may be deferred due to unforeseen circumstances such as competing priorities, time constraints with materials delivery/supply, etc.”
She said OCH could not provide a complete list of dates for tendering processes. “When bidding opportunities become available, we work with Merx, but since I am relatively new here, I’ve ask for additional information related to the publication of the tendering process and opportunities,” she wrote in an email.
Mayor Jim Watson, OCH board chair Coun. Mathieu Fleury, and chief executive officer Stéphane Giguère were on hand to share the details of the planned projects that many Ottawa residents will gain from.
OCH is the second largest housing provider in Ontario and the largest in Ottawa with over 14,850 rental units providing homes to approximately 32,000 residents. The work being undertaken addresses the maintenance, repair and replacement of building components, with the aim of extending the life of some of OCH’s aging housing stock.
A planned $30.5 million investment
The largest individual investment in OCH’s portfolio this year is at 380 Murray St. This 230-home, 11-storey apartment building was constructed in the early 1970s, will undergo a $2.3 million site renovation. This overhaul will improve both the functionality and efficiency of the property.
Structural, wall, and roof assembly restoration: An investment of close to $15 million will include repairs to balconies, parking lots, garages, sanitary pipe replacement, roof and wall assemblies, as well as complete recladding.
Elevator modernization: Approximately $3.1 million will be contributed to the elevator modernization program, benefiting a dozen apartment buildings.
Window and door replacement program: Estimated at $3 million, these upgrades will benefit several properties. OCH will be leveraging incentives from service partners like Enbridge and Hydro Ottawa to stretch the renovation budget and make energy-wise improvements more affordable. This will also increase the comfort and pride of place for OCH tenants.
Various site element upgrades: Funding of $7.5 million will provide asphalt paving, heating ventilation and air conditioning, plumbing repairs, fencing and regrading, and tree plantings throughout the portfolio.
“By upgrading aging infrastructure and improving the overall social housing stock in Ottawa, OCH is making an important investment in its clients and improving our city’s neighbourhoods,” said Mayor Watson. “This investment will enable OCH to contribute employment opportunities through local purchasing of a wide variety of products and services which will guarantee positive economic benefits to the city and its residents.”
At the launch, Coun. Fleury said: “As chair of OCH’s board, I am very proud of our board’s leadership in approving these important strategic investments for our communities. It is of the utmost importance that we continue to provide our tenants with good living conditions through these renewal projects. These housing investments demonstrate that the needs are properly identified and that we are dedicated to our tenants and coordinated in our approach.”
“With limited capital investment and the recognizable need to revitalise and maintain an aging portfolio OCH will continue to be strategic in its approach and seek novel solutions to providing safe and affordable housing to the residents,” said OCH CEO Stéphane Giguère.