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Project Goal: Address the need to increase the supply of housing across all segments of the housing market from emergency shelters to single-family homes.

Project Completion: Ongoing

The Situation

Amherst is in the midst of a housing crisis. This, of course, is the case from coast-to-coast in Canada as most communities struggle to meet the present and future residential requirements of our citizens.

At Town Hall, staff has been hearing practically every day about people who cannot find a suitable place to live, and from employers who cannot hire much-needed employees because of the lack of housing in the area. The town needs housing of every type across the spectrum.

The Town’s Actions

Progress has been made to address immediate needs and set the stage for action, including ensuring the most vulnerable have access to basic resources, and re-vamping existing services and processes at Town Hall.

Staff are working for the community, creating an environment that will better serve the needs of people who have no place to call home, newcomers to Amherst and Canada, incoming healthcare workers, employers, retirees and downsizers, and people entering the housing market for the first time.

A prime example of doing things differently is Amherst's Housing Infrastructure Investment Policy. This allows for developers to finance up to $250,000 worth of water, sewer, and street infrastructure through the Town, which will be paid back in installments over five years. Through this initiative, developers can focus on building housing units.

Projected Requirements

It has been calculated that Amherst will require the construction of approximately 100 dwelling units every year for the next several decades to keep pace with demand. Currently, the focus is on apartment developments.

Approved Housing Projects

  • Brown and Mosher Street Apartments: Three buildings, 162 units total
  • Prince Arthur Street and Electric Street Apartments: Two buildings, 86 units total
  • Blaine Street Development: Two buildings, 176 apartments total, plus 10 townhouses
  • Church Street (Dolan Property) Development: 30-40 units for Phase I in a range of housing types
  • Russell Street Development: Four-phase subdivision, max of 60 dwellings total
  • Marshview Drive: 30 lots for construction of executive-style homes
  • Industrial Park Drive: 18 single dwelling building lots

Close to 600 housing units approved, with construction underway (June, 2024).

Looking Forward

In Amherst, we’re taking action – making housing happen.

Review our Development Applications page for information on the six-step development agreement process, and to access information about past and present development agreements in Amherst. Information is also available on how applications for approval considered as-of-right, and by sight plan approval.

Anyone with an interest in advancing the construction of housing units in Amherst – developers, land-owners, and construction-related business owners – is welcomed to contact Amherst Town Hall at 902-667-3352.