Loger + / The City of Montreal announces a $21.4 million partnership with UTILE to build 670 off-market housing units for students

30 May 2024


Go back to NewsLoger + / The City of Montreal announces a $21.4 million partnership with UTILE to build 670 off-market housing units for studentsUTILE - Le Méridien

The City of Montreal, determined to support and accelerate the construction of more speculation-free housing in Montreal, is proud to announce a major financial partnership with the non-profit organization l'UTILE, which will see the construction of some 670 off-market housing units to accommodate nearly 1,000 students. Four projects will move forward thanks to $21.4 million in financial support.

This long-term partnership for the development of several projects is representative of the portfolio approach advocated by Chantier Montréal abordable. This new type of partnership marks a major shift in the support offered to NPOs building, purchasing or renovating units dedicated to long-term affordability in Montreal. Rather than supporting piecemeal opportunities that take time and significant effort on the part of NPOs, the Ville de Montréal is providing them with an enhanced capacity to seize a maximum number of rapid development opportunities.

The Unité de travail pour l'implantation de logement étudiant (UTILE) is a non-profit landlord that responsibly designs, builds and manages sustainable housing adapted to the needs of the student population, while reducing the pressure they exert on the rental market.

“Entering into a large-scale development partnership from the outset with an NPO like UTILE gives it the autonomy and capacity to develop as many off-market units as possible, much faster. Given the housing crisis affecting the student population and all tenants, this partnership for the development of off-market student housing has a double beneficial effect: it offers affordable housing to the students who make our metropolis shine, and it allows us to free up much-needed large family housing units. This development partnership will not be the last, and marks a major shift in our ability to support the creation of off-market units, while giving NPOs the capacity to do more and do it faster,” said Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante.

“L'UTILE is a partner of choice for the City of Montreal. By creating affordable, quality student housing, UTILE contributes to the quality of life of the student population and to the vitality of our neighbourhoods. Student housing is also a great opportunity to densify our neighborhoods intelligently, as the student population makes greater use of active and public transportation and seeks to live close to university campuses, which are often in central neighborhoods, close to shops and services. The city is pleased to participate in UTILE's mission, which is entirely in line with our vision,” noted Benoit Dorais, vice-president of the executive committee and responsible for housing, real estate strategy and legal affairs.

“If l'UTILE is able to bring all these projects to fruition today, it's thanks to the historic leadership of our student associations and the continued support of the Ville de Montréal since our inception. Student investments and our existing buildings in Montreal act as financial leverage to bring these projects to maturity. With today's announcement, the City is multiplying its structuring impact on UTILE's ability to house future generations of students in the metropolis,” stated Laurent Levesque, President and CEO of UTILE.

The four projects that will receive financial support from the City are located in several areas of the city.

  • The Cardinal project, located in Griffintown, in the Sud-Ouest borough, totals 285 apartments for around 358 tenants. The building will be close to the École de technologie supérieure (ÉTS), Concordia University and McGill University. Construction will start this year, and the first student cohort will be able to move in by 2027.
  • The La Note des rives project, located in Pointe-Saint-Charles, in the Sud-Ouest borough, comprises 95 housing units for some 208 tenants. Developed in collaboration with the Concordia Student Union, the project will start construction next year and is scheduled for completion in 2026.
  • A project on rue Saint-Hubert, in the Plateau-Mont-Royal borough, totals 149 units for around 235 tenants. Developed in collaboration with the Association étudiante de Polytechnique, the project will start construction in late 2025 and is scheduled for completion in 2028.Le quatrième projet, situé dans le secteur du Campus MIL, dans l'arrondissement d'Outremont, totalise 141 logements pour environ 200 locataires. Le projet devrait être mis en chantier pour la fin 2026 et livré en 2028.
  • The fourth project, located in the MIL Campus sector of the Outremont borough, totals 141 units for around 200 tenants. Construction is scheduled for late 2026, with delivery in 2028.

Funding for this partnership comes from the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal (CMM) social housing fund and contributions obtained under the Règlement pour une métropole mixte (RMM).

About Loger +

Loger + is a series of robust measures to enable the metropolis to house more Montrealers, with a focus on building new units and protecting existing affordable units. Improving administrative processes, enhancing support for NPOs to accelerate social and affordable housing and increasing densities are at the heart of the means used by the Ville de Montréal to respond to the housing crisis. These measures will provide concrete, tailored responses to the recommendations of the Chantier Montréal abordable, set up by the Ville de Montréal to bring together the driving forces in housing, from both the private and community sectors.