Housing-neighbourhood connections are weaker when it comes to programs and strategies in Toronto. Of course many municipal activities affect neighbourhoods, from recreation programs to roads to policing. In this think piece we want to consider the relationship between housing-related programs and explicit neighbourhood initiatives.
For the most part, the priorities in housing programs aren’t framed in terms of neighbourhood issues, while neighbourhood strategies pay little attention to housing. But connecting these two could be very fruitful, especially in local areas where residents are less affluent and most people rent apartments.
If we want to foster healthy conditions of life – with more affordable rents, decent housing quality, less resorting to food banks, less day-to-day stress, fewer fears about personal safety, and better environments for children – then let us think about housing as part of neighbourhood strategies.