RIMOUSKI, QUEBEC--(Marketwired - July 8, 2013) - The governments of Canada and Quebec will invest more than $1.5 million this year for the renovation of 80 social housing units in Rimouski. The Honourable Christian Paradis, Minister of Industry, Minister of State (Agriculture) and Member of Parliament for Mégantic-L'Érable, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), and Irvin Pelletier, Member of the National Assembly for Rimouski, on behalf of Sylvain Gaudreault, Minister of Municipal Affairs, Regions and Land Occupancy, Minister of Transport and Minister responsible for the Société d'habitation du Québec (SHQ), made the announcement.

This financial assistance, which was granted under the replacement, modernization and improvement budget, will serve to carry out the first phase of the work planned on the buildings of Place Lamoureux, in Rimouski. Of this sum, $850,000 was granted by the Government of Canada, through CMHC, while the Government of Quebec provided over $680,000, through the SHQ, and the City of Rimouski contributed an amount of $170,000. In all, an investment of $1.7 million was made to improve and modernize Place Lamoureux.

"Our government is committed to making communities stronger. Significant investments are being made in Quebec for the modernization and improvement of existing social housing to help improve the quality of life of families, individuals and seniors across the province. Our government remains focused on four priorities, as outlined by the Prime Minister, that Canadians care most about: their families, the safety of our streets and communities, their pride in being citizens of this country and, of course, their personal financial security," said Minister Christian Paradis.

"The Government of Quebec is concerned about the future of Quebec's low-rental housing stock, which constitutes a heritage to be preserved for subsequent generations. That's why it is investing considerable sums to ensure the sustainability of this infrastructure. This is great news for the families who, thanks to this major work, will have access to a safer unit and a more welcoming living environment. However, this announcement is also designed to bring hope to the Rimouski area, as we know that by improving the housing conditions of more vulnerable households, we are giving them tools so that they can grow and take an active part in the life of their community," added MNA Pelletier and Minister Gaudreault.

Managed by the Office municipal d'habitation de Rimouski (OMHR) and built in 1970, Place Lamoureux comprises 80 housing units, divided among five four-storey buildings. The financial assistance announced today will serve to replace the exterior siding of the buildings, which, after more than 40 years, has reached the end of its useful life. The soundproofing of the housing units will also be improved, providing more privacy to the residents. In addition, outdoor areas will be developed to meet the needs of the many families living in this housing project, which was the first low-rental housing project built in Rimouski.

A total of $3.05 million in financial assistance was granted in 2013 to the OMHR, under the replacement, modernization and improvement budget, to perform work on all of its housing stock.

"As Mayor of Rimouski, I am pleased that some of the buildings within our community real estate assets are benefiting from considerable investments on the part the provincial and federal governments. The City of Rimouski is proud to provide financial support for this renovation project that will give preference to local contractors and product suppliers, in an effort to use materials produced or processed in the region," said Rimouski Mayor Éric Forest.

With the Quebec Infrastructure Plan, and under the replacement, modernization and improvement budget, the investments of the governments of Canada and Quebec for the maintenance and renovation of the social housing stock increased from $103.1 million in 2007 to $308 million in 2012. These significant investments are in line with the clearly expressed commitment of the governments to improve the housing conditions of low-income households and people with special housing needs.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

The Government of Canada, through CMHC, will invest approximately $2 billion in housing this year. Of this amount, $1.7 billion will be spent in support of almost 594,000 households living in social housing. In Quebec, this represents some 127,150 households. These investments are improving the quality of life for low-income Canadians and households living in social housing, including individuals who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, seniors, persons with disabilities, recent immigrants and Aboriginal people.

To find out more about how CMHC is working to build stronger homes and communities for all Canadians, call CMHC at 1-800-668-2642 or visit http://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/.

Société d'habitation du Québec

The SHQ's mission is to facilitate citizens' access to appropriate housing conditions. Whether by helping to preserve the health of families and seniors, by addressing poverty, social exclusion and homelessness or by revitalizing neighbourhoods and regions, the Société d'habitation du Québec contributes to improving the quality of life of 230,000 households across Quebec each year. The SHQ also supports job creation and the economic development of all regions of Quebec.

For more information on the programs and services offered by the SHQ, visit www.habitation.gouv.qc.ca/english.html. You may also visit Espace Habitat, a new Web magazine (in French only) that features, among other things, the benefits of the SHQ's initiatives on all of Quebec society.

Contact Information:

Sources: Marie-Eve Imonti
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Municipal Affairs,
Regions and Land Occupancy
and Minister of Transport

Jan O'Driscoll
Press Secretary
Office of Minister Finley

Myriam Regnier
Communications Advisor
418-643-4035, ext.: 1187

Monique LaPlante
CMHC, Quebec Region