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The Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) recently held rallies across several Canadian cities regarding tenants' experiences of higher rents and poorer maintenance in units owned by real estate investment trusts.

The School of Planning's Dr. Brian Doucet spoke about these concerns, stating that Canada has focused largely on building new housing stock, while "losing sight of the housing that is already affordable."

This housing is often lost through demolition, or through the process of "renoviction", where tenants are evicted, so units can be renovated and rented at higher rates. 

The School of Planning's Dr. Martine August's 2022 report on The Financialization of Housing in Canada states that the largest financial firms in Canada hold an estimated 20-30 per cent of multifamily rental units, with that number increasing each year. 

More information on this issue and ACORNS concerns can be found in the original article, featured on CTV News

To learn more about affordable housing models and how Canada can apply them, please refer to Dr. Brian Doucet's August 2023 research report with the Canada Research Chairs. 

On September 30th, 2023, the School of Planning hosted its Welcome to Planning ceremony. This event provided an opportunity for our incoming students and their supporters to connect with the School of Planning community and engage with issues relevant to the Planning community that will shape their educational journey going forward.

Dr. Brian Doucet of the School of Planning outlines four affordable housing strategies that are working for the Canadian housing market. These strategies are provided through examples such as the Whistler Housing Authority, New Westminster's anti-renoviction bylaw, Burnaby's tenant assistance policy and Montreal's pre-emptive right policy. 

School of Planning Alum Samantha Biglieri (PhD, 2019), in collaboration with the School of Planning’s Dr. Jennifer Dean, has been awarded the 2023 PlanON Award for Innovation in Research at this year’s OPPI Annual Conference.  

The University of Waterloo is remembering Ian MacNaughton (BA ‘68, MA ‘71), a remarkable force in Ontario’s urban planning sector, after his death on Saturday, October 7, 2023.

To honour his rich legacy UWaterloo, which awarded MacNaughton its 50th Anniversary Alumni Award in 2007, is inaugurating an award in his name, the Ian MacNaughton Memorial Award, and naming a space in his honor. With this award and space naming, MacNaughton will continue the impact he made in life by inspiring and supporting future environment students.

The School of Planning's PhD Candidate, Cloé St-Hilaire, has been award the prestigious Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship for her research proposal into the effects of financialization and digital technologies on the Canadian rental housing market.

Professor Moos from the School of Planning collaborated with Skye Collishaw and Professor Tara Vinodrai from the University of Toronto on new research that shows people living in subsidized housing having more sustainable commutes (defined as the shorter distance travelled and lower car use) than otherwise similar renters. The findings have important planning and policy implications for the role of subsidized housing in terms of meeting housing affordability and climate change goals. The findings provide support for policies that promote investment in subsidized and affordable housing near transit as a housing affordability and sustainability strategy, particularly benefiting lower-income earners.

The research relies on Statistics Canada census data and is published in Housing Policy Debate.