Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Housing Supply Challenge: Round 4 - Building for the Future

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Building for the Future - Evaluation Panel Members

Anna Kwon

Project Manager, Project Management and Engineering Division | Université de Montréal

  • Full bio

    Anna Kwon is a project manager at Université de Montréal. She is a certified architect and member of the Ordre des architectes du Québec. Anna has more than 15 years of experience working on various construction projects for private and public firms. Her experience has focused primarily on public works, including affordable and low-income housing developments.

    In her role as a universal design consultant with Société Logique, Anna dedicated eight years to developing and implementing universal design principles into large-scale construction projects. Through her work on housing adaptation projects at Société Logique, Anna gained an understanding of what people with disabilities truly need in their living environments. She also learned about intelligent and thoughtful design principles that create a functional and enjoyable space for all, regardless of their physical or intellectual ability, origin or cultural identity. Anna is the founder of Experiment 303, a lab project that integrates universal design principles. Experiment 303 is funded under Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s (CMHC) National Housing Strategy Demonstrations Initiative. She has been involved in several housing accessibility research projects initiated and funded by CMHC, including the Study of the Cost of Including Accessibility Features in Newly Constructed Modest Houses. She also participated in the cost comparison for existing modest homes.

Asennaienton Frank Horn

Senior Manager Community Engagement | Indigenous Collaboration | Rogers

  • Full bio

    Asennaienton Frank Horn, specializes in indigenous community engagement. He has dedicated his 20 year career to bridging the gap where indigenous communities can be equal with the rest of Canada. He worked with Residential School survivors in the Common Experience Payment program at Service Canada; he worked with First Nation communities across Ontario on affordable housing projects at CMHC. In late 2021, he left for Rogers Communications Inc to bridge the “Digital Divide” for indigenous communities in the telecom space. Asennaienton patterns this passion after his parents observing them dedicate all their energy to helping indigenous people caught in the criminal justice system. Asennaienton is Kanien’keha (“People of the Flint”) from the sister communities of Kahnawake (south shore of Montreal QC) and Kanesatake (neighboring Oka QC). He is very proud of his ancestral roots and their resilience to centuries of colonialism.

Ashley Smith

Managing Director, Fundamental Inc - climate focused consulting and design

  • Full bio

    Ashley Smith is Owner and Managing Director of Fundamental Inc, a climate action consulting firm located in Newfoundland and Labrador. Ashley’s focus is on creating opportunities and developing solutions which address climate change – both mitigation (emissions reductions and energy efficiency) and adaptation (infrastructure resiliency and eco-asset management).

    Ashley has a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science and Chemistry from McGill University and a Master’s degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Toronto. Ashley is LEED® Accredited, trained in ISO 14064 for GHG emissions quantification, and has over 18 years’ experience in building design, community planning, construction project management, and renewable energy. Her combination of education and professional experience gives her a comprehensive approach to generating innovative solutions and implementing valuable outcomes.

Bill Semple

Designer, researcher, builder & consultant

  • Full bio

    Bill is a designer, researcher, builder and consultant whose work focuses on the design and development of culturally appropriate, sustainable housing and communities across the Canadian north and Alaska. Placing a strong emphasis on community engagement and the use of a design process that is geared towards the needs of remote northern Indigenous communities, Bill facilitates design workshops that engage a wide range of community members to discuss issues and share/develop ideas on the design and construction of culturally appropriate, super energy efficient northern housing. Bill has more than 20 years experience working on projects across the Canadian north and Alaska, developing a body of work which he has presented at numerous national and international conferences, and universities in the Circumpolar north.

    With a strong interest in building northern capacity in the areas of design and research, Bill co-teaches a course in ‘Sustainable Building in Extreme Environments’ at the Denmark Technical University in Copenhagen (Sisimiut Greenland campus) and is an external supervisor and evaluator in the Doctor of Design programme in Architecture, Planning and Landscape at the University of Calgary. Bill is a member of the Board of Directors of the Cold Climate Housing Research Center in Fairbanks Alaska, is a Research Associate with the Arctic Institute of North America, and is a member of the Indigenous Task Force of the Royal Architecture Institute of Canada (RAIC). In addition to his work in the far north, he continues to carry out design and consulting work with Tibetan communities in northern India. Issues of sustainability, both cultural and environmental, are significant drivers of his work.

    Bill has a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Waterloo, a Masters in Environmental Design (Architecture) from the University of Calgary and a PhD (Human Ecology) from the University of Alberta.

Francis Bissonnette

Founder and CEO - Batimatech

  • Full bio

    Francis Bissonnette is a graduate of HEC Montreal and holds an MBA from the University of Sherbrooke. He has over 20 years of expertise in the construction sector, including 12 years with a major construction association. He is the founder and CEO of Batimatech, a pillar of the construction and real estate industry in Quebec. Batimatech's mission is to promote innovation, collaboration, agility and the integration of the best digital solutions in our business ecosystem and in our institutions.

    In addition to organizing the PitchTech Innovation Construction competition for the past 7 years, which aims to promote innovation in the real estate (proptech) and construction sectors. Francis also conducts a census of technological solutions and innovative equipment for the construction industry in collaboration with the Ministère de l'Économie, de l'Innovation et de l'Énergie du Québec.

    In order to support the emergence of new solutions for the industry, Francis propels its incubator/accelerator, "L'atelier des possibilités", for and by the actors of construction, real estate, technologies (LABS) and venture capital.

Graeme Stewart

Principal – ERA Architects | Director – Tower Renewal Partnership

  • Full bio

    Graeme Stewart FRAIC OAA RPP CAHP is Principal of Toronto-based ERA Architects, and a founding director of the Tower Renewal Partnership, a cross-sectoral collaborative supporting the decarbonization of Canada’s existing affordable housing stock through research, policy and action. Through these efforts Graeme and his team have helped to kickstart deep retrofit in housing across Canada and has directly overseen the retrofit of over 1,500 units of housing in the Toronto region. Projects include the Ken Soble Tower, the first PassiveHouse certified retrofit of a high-rise residential building in North America. Graeme is a member of the Toronto Community Housing Design Review Panel and a regular lecturer in Universities in Ontario and abroad. He is also the co-editor of Concrete Toronto: A Guidebook to Concrete Architecture from the Fifties to the Seventies, and a recipient of the Jane Jacobs Prize for his ongoing work related to Tower Renewal.

Wilma Leung

Senior Manager, Technical Research and Education, BCH Research Centre, BC Housing

  • Full bio

    Wilma Leung has decades of experience in civil and structural engineering, environmental management, government administration, and building design and construction. Wilma is a recognized innovator and industry leader in energy efficiency and climate resilience for the housing and building sector. At BC Housing, she leads research and education that systematically improve the quality of residential design and construction. This research helps better prepare the sector to meet emerging needs and avert anticipated challenges. Wilma is a member of both the BC Energy Step Code Council and the Standing Committee on Energy Efficiency nationally. Through co-leading the Mobilizing Building Adaptation and Resilience (MBAR) initiative, she advances the development of sector knowledge and capacity in enabling, designing and building low-carbon, climate adapted and disaster resilient housing infrastructure.

Xavier Robidas

  • Full bio

    Xavier is curious by nature and has a wealth of experience and training in the environment and in economics. As a specialist in materials and building systems, Xavier’s experience as an innovation consultant for the Government of Quebec has turned this forestry and environmental engineer into an expert on the issues facing the construction industry. Xavier has an MBA from Université Laval and is currently the general manager of a forestry company.

Challenge details

Key Dates

  • Launch: December 1, 2022
  • Initial Submissions: April 13, 2023 at 2pm EST
  • Shortlisted: July 2023
  • Stage 2 Final Submissions: December 2023
  • Funded Solutions Announced: March 2024

Funding Allocation

  • Stage 1 – Incubation Funding for prototyping: Up to 25 Shortlisted Applications will receive $150k
  • Stage 2 – Implementation Funding: Selected solutions will share a pool of $38.5M

Who can Apply?

Lead Applicant must be a legal entity:

  • For-profit (ex: housing developers, builders, construction professionals, general contractors, technology companies, start-ups, architects etc.)
  • Not-for-profit organizations (ex: housing providers)
  • Indigenous organizations, governments, groups, housing agencies and authorities
  • Canadian post-secondary institutions
  • Governments (provincial, territorial, Indigenous, municipal, local and regional)
  • Teams composed of a variety of participants

* All participants must be affiliated with a legally incorporated organization