GATINEAU, QUÉBEC--(Marketwired - Sept. 9, 2013) - As a result of the combined efforts of the governments of Canada and Quebec, the City of Gatineau and their local partners, independent and semi-independent seniors now have access to 60 affordable housing units adapted to their needs.

The Résidences du Bel Âge de la Vallée du Lièvre, the construction of which required a total investment of nearly $8.9 million, was officially opened today by Stéphane Bergeron, Minister of Public Security and Minister responsible for the Outaouais region, 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). The Honourable Candice Bergen, Minister of State (Social Development) also wanted to mark this opening that crowns many years of work.

The Government of Canada, through the Agreement for Investment in Affordable Housing 2011-2014, and the Government of Quebec, under the AccèsLogis Québec program of the SHQ, jointly invested close to $3.9 million for the development of this building. In addition, the SHQ has secured the mortgage loan taken out by the organization to complete the financing of the project. The community contributed a total of nearly $1.7 million, including more than $1.1 million from the City of Gatineau and $245,000 from a community fundraiser.

"Our government is dedicated to helping those in need, which is why we are proud to have invested in this project here in Gatineau. These new units are more than just safe and affordable places to live. They are the key to a better life for the people who will call them home. We remain 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 Bergen.

"The affordable housing project announced today is excellent news, as it was long awaited in the area. The Résidences du Bel Âge de la Vallée du Lièvre project meets a growing need for seniors' housing in the sector, in addition to contributing to the wellness of our seniors by allowing them to remain in their living environment and continue benefiting from their social network," said Minister Stéphane Bergeron.

More than $516,000 in additional financial assistance over five years, assumed by the SHQ (90 per cent) and the City of Gatineau (10 per cent), enables 30 tenants of the Résidences du Bel Âge de la Vallée du Lièvre to benefit from the Rent Supplement program, ensuring that they do not pay more than 25 per cent of their income on housing.

"The City of Gatineau is proud to be one of the financial partners in this project, These 60 dwellings are among the 700 new affordable housing units promised in Gatineau for the period from 2005 to 2009. As well, the objective of 700 additional units targeted for the period from 2010 to 2013 is almost already achieved, as 660 units are either completed, under construction or coming soon. This means that a total of 1,400 new units will have been built in Gatineau thanks to municipal investments and the invaluable contributions of numerous partners and the higher levels of government," said Gatineau Mayor Marc Bureau.

"Thanks to the support of government and our donors, we can meet an essential need for our community-to provide our seniors with access to safe and affordable housing, in addition to contributing to their well-being. The construction of these housing units has allowed us to give back to those who helped build our community," said Bill Cameron, Chair of the Board of Directors of the Résidences du Bel Âge de la Vallée du Lièvre.

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

Société d'habitation du Québec

The SHQ's mission is to facilitate citizens' access to appropriate housing conditions. Housing constitutes a structured response to numerous challenges and needs of Quebec society. 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 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 You may also visit Espace Habitat, the SHQ's Web magazine (in French only) that features, among other things, the benefits of this agency'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

Johanna Quinney
Communications Manager
Office of the Minister of State (Social Development)

Information: Alexandra Pare
Communications Advisor
Societe d'habitation du Quebec
418-643-4035, ext. 1297

Monique LaPlante
CMHC, Quebec Region