People are fleeing Toronto home prices to cheap off-grid communities in Ontario's north
Author: Becky Robertson
Boreal’s projects currently cover nearly 900 acres of unincorporated land about six hours north of Toronto, but plans are expanding fast, with opportunities to live oceanfront in Panama and New Brunswick now also in the works. Barrett says while the off-grid aspect necessitates and enables the use of these eco-friendly options and conservation of services, the main ethos of the villages, along with keeping costs for residents extremely low, is having zero environmental impact. The board establishes bylaws, decides how the community will be run and helps determine what will be done with the common parts of the site, which are usually about two-thirds of a given property, whether it be reserved for greenhouses to grow food or for a community centre or other indoor space. While some people are planning to just seasonally camp and others are towing in pre-certified tiny homes or building more permanent structures, the way of living manages to both hearken back to simpler and less expensive times and also utilize the latest in 21st-century technologies: solar panels, electric outboard motors, Starlink satellite internet, and incinerator and compost toilets among them.