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Roofs go on social housing development

8 June 2007

Gowerton Place housing developments progressing

Work is progressing to schedule on the development of the new 20-unit Gowerton Place social housing development in Richmond, Christchurch, with the roof having gone on the first of the five blocks.

Gowerton Place is the first partnership social housing development between the Christchurch City Council and Housing New Zealand.

The roof went on the first block this week, with all five blocks expected to have the roof by the end of this month. The first residents are expected to move into the complex by late October.

The predominately single-level units are being built on land owned by Council, with both Council and Housing New Zealand having agreed to contribute up to $2.44 million to the development.

Gowerton Place is a significant development in the future provision of social housing in the city, says Christchurch Mayor Garry Moore.

“The Council’s recently adopted Social Housing Strategy places a strong emphasis on developing partnerships and working in collaboration with key stakeholders, such as Government, to develop social housing.”

He said an ageing population, falling home ownership and continually increasing market rents are expected to significantly contribute to a greater need for future social housing in the city.

Mr Moore said through partnerships the Council will focus on at least maintaining its current housing stock, and where possible expanding the supply of social housing in Christchurch.

Gowerton Place was an excellent example of what could be achieved when central and local government worked together to deliver vital community infrastructure, said Housing New Zealand’s General Manager Housing Innovations Paula Snowden.

“Housing New Zealand is delighted to help the Council and the city to continue to provide homes for those in need in the most cost-effective way.

“The loan for this development was through Housing New Zealand’s Housing Innovation Fund. Set-up in 2003, it assists councils, charitable trusts, iwi and community organisations to either become involved in social housing for the first time, continue their involvement in social housing or expand what they currently do,” Ms Snowden said.

Christchurch City Council was a pioneer of social housing in New Zealand, building its first units in the early 1920s.

Today, the Council has 2651 units at 116 complexes and is New Zealand’s second largest provider of affordable social housing. The Housing New Zealand Corporation is the largest provider with 5452 units in Christchurch.

The Council-Housing New Zealand Gowerton Place development of 16 single-storey and four second-storey units will incorporate energy-efficient heating and double glazing.

It is expected the 20 units will be fully tenanted by the end of October 2007.


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