WINDSOR, ONT. -- A local non-profit is showcasing its affordable housing plan for Chatham-Kent.

The team at the Opportunity Villages Community Land Trust (OVCLT) has developed the region’s first “modern life-lease small home community” model, which will offer accessible pricing at 10 per cent below current market value.

“In the past, smaller homes were often referred to as wartime houses and were perfect for first time home buyers, small families and those who were looking to retire and downsize,” said Chatham-Kent councillor Karen Kirkwood-Whyte in a news release.  “We’re taking the idea of wartime houses and updating it by mixing it together with the vast improvements in building materials, construction technology, and the innovations developed over the past 60 years.”

Opportunity Villages has outlined its plan on a recently launched website. Opportunity Villages based its plan on the principle that affordable home ownership must also include beautiful and function homes that help to reduce environmental impacts.

In addition to building affordable homes, the project aims to ensure owners are provided with the chance live within a solid neighbourhood feel.

“A great deal of care and attention is being paid to balancing the space for individuals with the flow and feel of the neighbourhood,” said Rose Linseman of RAD Studio.  “We know that good communities plan for the people who live there, while exceptional communities make investments that bring people together; and we’re building for exceptional.”

The project is still in the early development stages, but the land at 10 Taylor Avenue in Chatham has been purchased and zoning updates are being reviewed. Partners such as the Municipality of Chatham-Kent have also stepped forward to commit resources for the project to move forward.

“We’re well past the dreaming stage and are running at full speed towards finishing the final site plans and getting ready to have some shovels in the ground as soon as possible,” said Steve Pratt, Board President of the OVCLT.  “There are approximately 30 houses that will be available.  We are reaching out to the community now to gather expressions of interest which will help inform our final decisions.”

Those interested in the housing project can visit the website to provide contact information and receive updates including floor plans and when and how to purchase.