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N.S. is offering land for affordable housing. Some say there is a catch

Of 10 projects, 2 dropped out, 1 under construction, others waiting for approvals

Larry Thomas walks to the edge of a piece of forest in Hammonds Plains, where he’d hoped by now to see shovels in the ground.

“We’re having a hell of a time getting started,” said Thomas, a retired real estate broker now working with a new non-profit organization, One World Building Association.

Last June, the province awarded the non-profit a parcel off Hammonds Plains Road in the Highland Park neighbourhood where they plan to build 32 townhouses.

The Land for Housing Program has been billed as a way to create affordable housing quickly by offering up provincial lands to non-profits or developers for a low fee. But it is drawing criticism for not going far enough to remove red tape, or ensuring housing units will be affordable in the long term.

CBC reviewed the status of all 10 projects announced over the past three years and found two have withdrawn, one is under construction and the others are in various planning stages. …[Continue Reading]