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Next steps for County of Simcoe Hub in Orillia

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​In spring/summer 2019, a consultation process was undertaken regarding the development of a community hub on the former Orillia District Collegiate and Vocational Institute (ODCVI) property in Orillia. Based on input from 678 community members and organizations, a compelling vision has emerged of a vibrant, diverse and inclusive regional hub that provides affordable housing options for seniors and other mixed income households, helps to alleviate the barriers to accessing essential community and social services for residents, and creates a sense of inclusion.

In January, Council approved extending a Request for Proposal (RFP) for architectural design firms in accordance with the County's procurement guidelines. In early 2020, the contract will be awarded for a feasibility study, site plan and conceptual design, seeking input from staff and stakeholders, including the City of Orillia, along the way.

The development will follow a two-phased approach, with a multi-building campus design, including affordable housing and community services as well as County corporate and other business services. Phase 1 is estimated to be built by 2022/23, and will likely include approximately 100 affordable mixed units for seniors, families and individuals, an Ontario Works, Children and Community Services, and Housing office, an Ontario Works programming room, offices for community agencies to rent, an EarlyON site, a licensed child-care site, a communal room and common kitchen and a meeting space. Other large anchor tenants in the health or children's services sector will also be considered. Phase 2 will likely include County corporate services, other business services, health services and space for a seniors' day program. Timing for Phase 2 will be determined at a later date.

Additional studies and continuous consultation with area partners will occur throughout the project. Stay tuned for more information on the development of the Community Hub and how you can help shape the future of the ODCVI property.