Fort McMurray: one third of housing destroyed in the process of being rebuilt

News 20 July, 2017
  • Photo AFP
    Archival photograph of the April 17, 2017 on a neighborhood rebuilding in Fort McMurray Alberta.

    QMI agency

    Thursday, 20 July 2017 20:24

    Thursday, 20 July 2017 20:24

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    The third of the homes destroyed during last year’s forest fires that have devastated the region of Fort McMurray, in Alberta, are in the process of being rebuilt, said on Thursday the canada mortgage and housing corporation (CMHC) in an analysis of the situation.

    In the spring of 2016, up to 10 % of the buildings of Fort McMurray had been ravaged by the fire.

    Over a year later, nearly 850 of them have been rebuilt or are under the point of the be, according to the CMHC, which says that only 1 % of housing units lost will not be rebuilt, due to the protection measures against floods”.

    The pace of reconstruction is maintained, so that the CMHC and the regional municipality of Wood Buffalo believe that all the buildings razed to be replaced by “three to four years”.

    “The rebuilding has begun for good. Until now, one-third of the buildings destroyed by the fires of 2016, are being rebuilt. It is expected that other workers across Alberta are participating in the reconstruction, which will reduce the vacancy rate. The reconstruction is expected to last three to four years,” said Tim Gensey, market analyst for the canada mortgage and housing, by issuing a press release.

    It’s not the fire that brought down the economy of the Fort McMurray area. The energy markets have also contributed to the slowdown of the resale of the properties, which, after being “firmed” over the last two quarters of 2016, “has started to show signs of weakness,” according to the CMHC.

    If the reconstruction work, stimulate the regional economy, the fact remains that the “long-term prospects remain uncertain. Unemployment is down, but it continues to exceed the levels prior to the fall of oil prices. The effect of the low oil prices is particularly acute in the resale market,” writes the Company.