LONDON, ONT -- Just five years after it was launched to support the construction of affordable housing council took the first step to dismantle its Housing Development Corporation.

“I think a housing development corporation can work. I think our housing development corporation didn’t work,” said Councillor Phil Squire.

The disappointment was palpable, just five years after council launched the Housing Development Corporation, they were considering a recommendation to dissolve the arms-length organization tasked with supporting developers building affordable housing.

“Seeing something worked on, and making promises for five or six years, now being dissolved, I don’t think that’s a good day for us,” said Squire.

The HDC’s role became less clear when senior governments began working directly with private developers to fund affordable housing.

City staff now recommend bringing the work in-house at City Hall, where an internal team can integrate the efforts of several municipal departments.

Councillor Stephen Turner felt the new plan was too vague.

“I’m rather uncomfortable with motions to move towards the dissolution of an organization when we have a lot of questions about what the future entity is,” he said.

“When we were talking about housing in 2014 and then we’re talking about housing in 2020, it’s a different conversation. There are different things happening,” said Councillor Anna Hopkins.

London currently needs 3,000 new affordable units, so Council directed staff to bring forward documents that will dissolve the HDC in the spring and develop a detailed plan for the internal group taking over the role.

“The only measurable in my mind that has to happen, is 3,000 affordable housing units in this city,” said Mayor Ed Holder.

Deputy Mayor Morgan says with the housing crisis a top priority, council couldn’t wait for the HDC to find new ways to achieve its goals.

“We can not be stubborn with this file. If something is not performing at full capacity with the context of the day, then we got to shift directions.”