A necessary look at how public, non-profit, and co-operative housing flourished and faded.
Social housing - public, non-profit, or co-operative - was once a part of Canada's urban success story. After years of neglect and many calls for affordable homes and solutions to homelessness, housing is once again an important issue. In Still Renovating, Greg Suttor tells the story of the rise and fall of Canadian social housing policy. Focusing on the main turning points through the past seven decades, and the forces that shaped policy, this volume makes new use of archival sources and interviews, pays particular attention to institutional momentum, and describes key housing programs. The analysis looks at political change, social policy trends, housing market conditions, and game-changing decisions that altered the approaches of Canadian governments, their provincial partners, and the local agencies they supported. Reinterpreting accounts written in the social housing heyday, Suttor argues that the 1970s shift from low-income public housing to community-based non-profits and co-ops was not the most significant change, highlighting instead the tenfold expansion of activity in the 1960s and the collapse of social housing as a policy priority in the 1990s. As housing and neighbourhood issues continue to flare up in municipal, provincial, and national politics, Still Renovating is a valuable resource on Canada's distinctive legacy in affordable housing.