Can They Build or Not? Nonprofit Housing Development in an Era of Government Re-Engagement




logements abordables, Stratégie nationale sure le logement, organismes à but non lucratif


In the context of new government investment in housing, this article explores the experiences of nonprofit organizations in securing support for new affordable rental housing development in three regions across Canada. Many challenges were reported, including ones pertaining to administration (extensive proposal requirements, lack of information and communication, and lengthy review processes), and the design of funding programs (such as a lack of flexibility available to proponents). Participants also reported limitations to the amount and nature of support provided, challenges working across different levels of government, and an uneven playing field among nonprofit and for-profit housing developers. Overall, results show that despite significant and recent investments made available for affordable housing, the nonprofit sector faces many barriers in accessing these, and that significant changes are required so that housing organizations may provide rental units to those in greatest need.


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Author Biographies

Aijia Deng, Cape Breton University

Aijia Deng is a MBA graduate in Community Economic Development at Cape Breton University, Sydney, NS B1P 4T3. Email:

Catherine Leviten-Reid, Cape Breton University

Catherine Leviten-Reid is an Associate Professor of Community Economic Development at Cape Breton University, Sydney, NS B1P 4T3. Email:

Luc Thériault, University of New Brunswick

Luc Thériault is a professor in the Sociology department at University of New Brunswick, 100 Tucker Park Rd, Saint John, NB E2K 5E2. Email: