South Bruce looks at future housing needs in municipality

SOUTH BRUCE - Dave Rushton, project manager with the South Bruce Nuclear Exploration Team, presented council with the housing growth strategy RFP results during the April 9 meeting.

Council awarded the contract in the amount of $80,690 plus taxes to Deloitte for the housing growth strategy report, with additional costs to BM Ross.

Rushton noted that even with the additional costs, it comes in under the $100,000 mark.

He explained that the reason for the strategy is there’s “a lot of growth” happening in South Bruce, with retirees and new people looking for housing. He noted that depending on the outcome of the Nuclear Waste Management Organization’s (NWMO) site selection process, there could be a lot more people in need of housing.

Traditionally, the vast majority of housing in South Bruce has been single-family dwellings.

“We need to take a look at this,” he said, commenting that a retired couple may not want a four-bedroom house. The strategy “will help us do growth planning for the future.”

The single-family home has “been the norm.

“What needs to be looked at is a mix of housing types and densities. The report stated the objectives of the strategy include assessing housing needs based on projected population growth, identifying where that growth will be and what form of housing needs there will be, and looking at the Master Servicing Plan in relation to housing to identify infrastructure needs. This includes the needs of the wider community in terms of parks, recreation, schools, daycare and social housing “that may be required over the 2046 timeframe.”

The Nuclear Exploration Team issued a request for proposal for a housing growth strategy in February; two responses were received, only one of which was under budget – Deloitte’s – which met all criteria.

This included the consultant’s understanding of NWMO’s site selection process, in addition to the ability to work with municipalities and meet timelines.

Pauline Kerr, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Walkerton Herald Times