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Properties in Toronto – Canada’s largest city – have climbed dramatically in value over the past two decades. The high price of property has given developers a captive market. And they’ve built exactly what buyers want: a high density, dense neighbourhood, where most buyers expect to have to pay more to park than to live.
“There is a real shortage of parking in Toronto,” says real estate investor Matt Elliott, who is now convinced he has found the answer to the looming crisis. He is the founder of Tilthorn Holdings and is designing a new project in Toronto, called The Triangle, to solve this housing shortage.
The Triangle is a high-density, transit-rich neighbourhood that serves as a bike route through the area. About seven per cent of its housing, on average, is market-rate, while almost 50 per cent is affordable, or just-above. About a third of the housing is targeted to low-income households.
According to the government, only two per cent of Toronto’s land is zoned for this kind of mixed-use development. Tilthorn Holdings has found a way to implement this city-wide. The developer is building its own, hybrid market-affordable “workforce,” market-rate and affordable homes, in exchange for offering the owner of adjacent parking lots the chance to build a mixed-use development (and land-value gains) of approximately $50 million.