Affordable Housing Development Monitor
To help track Calgary’s progress, the Affordable Housing Development Monitor (Monitor) was developed to better understand the city’s affordable housing shortfall. The Monitor captures new construction that meets the city’s criteria for affordable housing, including active and completed developments, and additionally includes preliminary inquiries and pre-applications.
Through tracking our progress, we can monitor and adjust City programs which support affordable housing development as needed. The Monitor is one piece of the puzzle that will help tell a more complete story about the pace at which we are progressing and necessary adjustments on the path towards the goal.
The Q4 2020 Monitor report is available here.
New affordable homes required
- As of 2016, about 3.6% of households in Calgary are considered non-market affordable housing. The national average is 6%. More than 15,000 new homes are needed in Calgary to meet the national average for urban centres.
- Since 2016, 2,203 affordable homes have been completed and 2,481 are currently planned. A significant portion (1,228) of these planned homes are not yet approved: most often because the applicant does not yet have capital funding in place to secure with development. With significant and progressive effort to support the realization of these homes, Calgary would be at 31% toward the 15,000 target by 2022 to “get to average”.
Affordable homes by year
Approved and issued
As of the end of Q4 2021, the City’s planning department has issued permits for 20% of the affordable housing homes needed to close the 15,000-unit gap to reach the national average. A significant decline in approvals for 2020 reduces future construction. Maintaining steady approvals year-over-year depends on a sufficient number of ready-to-proceed proposals in the projects pipeline.
Forecasted affordable homes completed by year
The Community Advocacy Plan seeks to create 5,400+ homes over the next three years but investment from federal and provincial partners is required to realize these new homes. As of December 2020, only 18% (1,107 homes) of the targeted development for the 2021-2025 period will be constructed in the next 4 years. An upward trend in constructed homes depends on substantial investments.
Affordable homes by sector
The non-profit sector is the largest contributor of proposed affordable housing development - 69% of homes that were completed or planned since 2016 are from the non-profit sector. Out of the 3,050 homes proposed, 1,080 homes (35%) have not been issued for construction.
A significant portion (62%) of projects proposed in the later half of 2020 were related to non-profits seeking funding opportunities from the Rapid Housing Initiative (RHI).
Increased private-sector contributions in 2020 meant a greater volume of large build-apartments. The non-profit sector, on the other hand, has maintained the most variety in new product inventory including small to mid-build apartments, row/townhomes, and special care facilities.
Through the City of Calgary’s Non-Profit Land Sale (NPLS), 156 homes have been completed, with another 128 homes in the planning approvals process, for a total of 284 homes. This represents 23% of all homes proposed by the non-profit sector since 2018.
Affordable homes under review
Proposed unit volumes have seen an upward trend since Q2 of 2020, with a peak in Q4. As a result, the number of affordable homes under review nearly doubled from Q2 to Q4 of 2020.
The non-market housing sector is poised to deliver a significant number of homes should adequate capital be made available. Non-market providers are demonstrably nimble and responsive to development opportunities, though resource constraints and uncertainty are extending project timelines. Our community of housing providers is ready for investment and the time for continued advocacy with our federal and provincial partners is now.
We still have work to do to get – and keep – Calgary building.