Delayed Taloyoak housing units scheduled to go up this year

‘Homelessness and overcrowding are major issues,’ says Netsilik MLA Joseph Quqqiaq

Two duplexes are scheduled to be built in Taloyoak by the end of 2022. (File photo)

By Nunatsiaq News

After insurance issues and COVID-19-related delays postponed the construction of Taloyoak’s new housing units last year, the project has a new timeline.

Lorne Kusugak, the minister responsible for the Nunavut Housing Corporation, confirmed the units are slated go up by the end of this year. He offered the information on Tuesday in response to a question in the legislative assembly from the community’s MLA.

Netsilik MLA Joseph Inagayuk Quqqiaq asked what tangible steps have been taken to make sure the units will be built according to the new schedule.

“My constituents in Taloyoak were very disappointed to learn last year that the planned new units for the community had been delayed,” Quqqiaq said.

Joseph Inagayuk Quqqiaq is the MLA for Netsilik. (Photo by Mélanie Ritchot)

Kusugak didn’t say whether the insurance issues had been resolved, but said there won’t be any more delays.

“We have been informed that they are going to go ahead,” he said.

Kusugak didn’t specify whether the plans for the units would stay the same, but as of last year, the community was expecting two new duplexes.

Quqqiaq also asked Kusugak about housing issues in Kugaaruk, the other community in his riding.

“All communities in Nunavut need housing and the communities of Kugaaruk and Taloyoak are no exception,” Quqqiaq said, adding homelessness and overcrowding are major issues in both communities.

He asked the minister about housing units slated to be built in Kugaaruk through the federal government’s Rapid Housing Initiative.

Kusugak said the houses should be completed in November, 2022, “if construction can go ahead.”

Quqqiaq also asked Kusugak for an update on an independent review that has been commissioned by the housing corporation to looks at how the government constructs homes, and what changes, if any, the housing corporation is considering making to how it allocates housing to communities.

Kusugak said the way the territorial government manages housing is still under review.

“There are occasions where some communities wait a very long time for new allocations of housing, while other communities are always getting new housing,” Kusugak said.

He said the price of building units is an issue, with the cost of building one housing unit sometimes reaching $1 million.

“If it’s a sixplex, it can be $6 million for little one-bedroom units,” he said.

“We really need to take a look at how we deal with housing and where we want to go with that because, at that rate, we will never make housing affordable,” Kusugak said.

Last year, then-MP Mumilaaq Qaqqaq visited Taloyoak and Kugaruuk during a housing tour before she released a report on housing conditions in Nunavut.

She said she saw the most mould in homes in Taloyoak, compared to other communities she visited.

At the time, 112 people in Taloyoak were on the wait list for social housing, and one family told Qaqqaq they had been waiting for a unit for more than 13 years, according to the report.

In Kugaaruk, almost all the units Qaqqaq visited had problems with the windows — which wouldn’t close properly and had ice and snow build-up in the cold months — making it difficult for homes to retain heat, she said.

Share This Story

(7) Comments:

  1. Posted by asianik isumalik on

    It’s good to see that this young man is doing what he can to help his community.
    Housing is a big issue as everybody knows and this is why in three east Qitiqmeot
    communities the omicron variant spread very quickly.
    One family has 11 people living in 1 house and they are all adults ranging from 17- 47 yrs old, and a lot of elders have to live with young people who have addictions resulting at times in elder abuse and lack of sleep etc.
    Most of us can’t afford our own house to due to astronomical utility prices.

  2. Posted by Root causes on

    When 1 bedroom units cost a million dollars, that’s not sustainable. Nunavut has way a growing population living in communities that have no economy to sustain them, and a lack of desire to learn the professions and trades that it takes to keep a community going.

    It can’t go on, and yet that’s everyone’s solution, “give us more houses”. Inuit housed themselves for thousands of years. I realize nobody wants to live in tents, igloos and sod houses any more, but the outside world (because that is largely where the money, materials and labour comes from) cannot keep providing an endless number of modern houses, either.

    If no economy (like mining) can be developed, there are just too many people living there, rather than not enough houses. Nunavut needs politicians brave enough to voice this and actually tackle the problem.

  3. Posted by Confused on

    He said the price of building units is an issue, with the cost of building one housing unit sometimes reaching $1 million.

    Isn’t it something like $250,000?

  4. Posted by Crystal Clarity on

    According to the archived stories about this issue these houses were delayed in construction because of prohibitive construction costs due to COVID. Now they are getting them this year which is a good thing. Public Housing is going to remain a huge issue everywhere in Nunavut. There must be a more creative solution to this problem. I will have to think more seriously on this. Demanding more from the governments is only the tip of the iceberg. There’s only so much money that can be poured into building public units. We need a smarter way.

  5. Posted by Arctic Circle on

    Jr has already made an impact for his riding, I can’t wait to see what else he can do for the territory.

    Keep up the good work!

  6. Posted by Withheld on

    Wow , $1,000,000.00 for a one bedroom unit , no kidding for them housing guys . They need that much to have a coffee break , no wonder it takes many years to build a simple house.
    Meanwhile, all the young people in every community is waiting for work , what a great opportunity missed by the corporation to train their own people to make homes in their communities, carpenters,electricians, plumbers , oil burner mechanics and so on and so forth that our graduates can access apprenticeships on !
    I built my mini home ,16×20 for less than $10,000.00. One bedroom and fully winterized with renewable energy .
    Notice the zeroes .

Comments are closed.