City firm wins bid to construct Fergus social housing project

Kiwi-Newton Construction Ltd., of Guelph, was awarded the tender to build social housing units on Gordon Street in Fergus on March 26.

Council approved its ad­min­istration, finance, and personnel committee recom­men­dation.

The project will have 55 apartment units on a 6.5 acre parcel of land on the north side of Gordon Street, east of Highway 6.

The total cost of the project was estimated be $8.4-million. The county received  $4.3-million in grants. The building will have 37 one-bedroom units and 18 two-bedroom units.

According to the committee documents, the costs for the project now are:

– $8.11-million for con­trac­ted construction;

– $464,000, architect’s fees;

– $250,000 for furniture furnishings, and equipment;

– $15,00 for miscellaneous costs;

$100,000 for permits and approvals; and

– $568,000 for contingen­cies.

That brings the total cost to $9.507-million.

The funding is from:

– $1.463-million from the federal government;

– $2.269-million from the provincial government;

– $2.548-million from the county social housing development reserve account;

– provincial debentures of $2.387-million; and

– $1.619-million for county debentures.

The report noted that the county debenture portion was reduced to $840,000 because of savings.

Social housing is designed to provide housing for people who have jobs but otherwise cannot find suitable housing. Rents are pegged at 80% of the average rents in a community. It could be for people with mobility issues, and is designed to attract families, seniors, and people with disabilities.

Committee chairman John Green called the bid “pretty favourable.” He told council that Kiwi-Newton came in nearly $500,000 ahead of the next best bid. Kiwi-Newton’s bid was $8,110,000, which is under the original estimate.

There were eight bids received, and the highest was $9.67-million.

Social services committee chairman Gord Tosh said all the units will be facing south, and there will be a solar power unit on the roof. Construction is expected to start this summer. There is enough land that council can con­sider more social housing there.