Essex Looks at Affordable Municipal Housing Strategy

Essex Town Council is taking a look at affordable housing.

Councillors gave the okay to rezone the Essex Motel on Talbot St. N. to create 10 apartments last week — that discussion opened a dialog about the bigger picture.

"That proponent is using the Community Improvement Plan, which has an affordable housing incentive in there for each apartment. Can we capture more of those, because that's exactly what we needed," says Ward 4 Councillor Sherry Bondy.

Council unanimously supported Bondy's motion to develop an Affordable Municipal Housing Strategy.

Bondy brought the initiative forward after hearing several families were struggling to find a home.

"Housing in Windsor-Essex is at a crisis for some people, so we can't turn a blind eye ... we haven't had our strategic planning session yet, but that doesn't mean we can't identify this as a priority," she added.

She tells AM800 News repurposing the Essex Motel is an example of what can be done.

Programs are in place, but Bondy hopes administration can identify some strengths and shore up some weaknesses.

"I want to look at what we have already existing. Is it secondary suites, can we give more incentives to developers to build that affordable housing? What can we easily do and what are the harder things," says Bondy.

Administration will come back to council with a report in the coming weeks.