Released December 9, 2009

Nearly $1 Million in Retrofits Slated for Freshwater Road Housing Units

The Honourable Tom Hedderson, Minister of Transportation and Works and Minister Responsible for Newfoundland Labrador Housing (Housing), today announced an investment of $929,000 to completely retrofit eight social housing dwellings on Freshwater Road in St. John’s.

“It gives me great pleasure to announce this project for Freshwater Road, which is part of nearly $15.9 million in modernization and improvement projects being invested by Housing this 2009-10 fiscal year in the Avalon Region,” said Minister Hedderson. “This particular project will help address the current demand for more two-bedroom social housing properties. Much of the province’s social housing was built 40 to 50 years ago and served the larger families of the time. Projects such as these focus on today’s demographics and the needs of smaller families.”

Kelloway Construction Ltd. has been awarded the contract. The project will see an eight unit, three-bedroom property converted into eight two-bedroom units. The retrofit will involve the replacement of existing windows, doors, siding, strapping, window wells, building wrap, insulation, roofing, chimneys, and basement wall repairs and modifications. The units will receive new electrical and plumbing systems and new street service connections. New kitchen cabinets and bathroom fixtures will be installed along with related exhaust vents. The attics will be insulated with energy-efficient blown-in cellulose. The anticipated completion date for this project is August 2010.

“I am pleased to know that before long these units will be given a new life and their tenants a comfortable and modern place to call home,” said Bob Ridgley, MHA for St. John’s North. “In recent years, there has been a tremendous focus placed on upgrading social housing in this area, which has some of the province’s first housing developments.”

These current upgrades and repairs are part of Housing’s annual Modernization and Improvement program. As part of Budget 2009: Building on Our Strong Foundation, the Provincial Government will invest $14.55 million for building, renovating and retro-fitting social housing infrastructure throughout Newfoundland and Labrador.

This work is in keeping with the goals of the Social Housing Plan for Newfoundland and Labrador – Secure Foundations, which outlines a new long-term vision for social housing aimed at improving the housing circumstances of lower-income households and helping to create healthier communities.

In the spring, the federal and provincial governments announced a joint investment of $93 million to build new and renovate existing affordable housing throughout the province over the next two years. Overall, the provincial contribution is $50 million, with the Federal Government contributing a further $43 million.

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Media contacts:

Roger Scaplen
Director of Communications
Department of Transportation and Works
709-729-3015, 697-5267
Jenny Bowring
Manager, Communications
Newfoundland Labrador Housing
Donna Ivey
Communications Manager
Government Members Office
709-729-0898, 697-1424