INDEPENDENT NEWS

Funding For Eight New Affordable Rental Properties Approved

Published: Mon 26 Jun 2023 12:11 PM
Nelson City Council has approved $1.2 million in grant funding from Phase Three of its Housing Reserve to support the development of more affordable housing in the city.
In a meeting on 4 May 2023, elected members agreed to grant $1.2m to the Nelson Tasman Housing Trust for the development of eight affordable rental properties on 163 Kawai Street South and 116 Waimea Road, as recommended by Council’s Community Housing Acceleration Taskforce.
The development is expected to be completed by March 2025.
Nelson Mayor Nick Smith says the grant will help the Nelson Tasman Housing Trust meet the acute need for more affordable, quality homes in the city.
“The Nelson Tasman Housing Trust has a proven track record of developing quality affordable housing and these homes will be a welcome addition to our community. They’re well situated for easy access to the central city, they’re on a bus route, close to Nelson Hospital, schools and Victory Community Centre. The total project cost of $4.2 million, or $530,000 per home, shows how effective the Trust is at getting value for money.
“The timetable for completion will depend on securing other funding, particularly from Government. The Taskforce and I will be strongly supporting the Trust in securing this additional funding.”
Two existing houses, built in the 1940s, and outbuildings will be removed to make way for the new development. The eight single-storey units will each contain two bedrooms, photovoltaic panels to reduce energy costs, and parking for one car each. At least two of the new units will be designed to be wheelchair accessible.
Mayor Nick says the eight homes will contribute towards the goal he set on becoming Mayor of doubling the number of community housing homes from 50 to 100 by 2026.
“I acknowledge the work of the Housing Trust, Council staff and the Taskforce, led by Councillor Rachel Sanson, in enabling this grant to be made quickly. Our challenge is to wisely, but quickly, convert the Housing Reserve funds into good quality homes for people in desperate housing need and we are achieving this.”
Councillor Rachel says housing insecurity remains a key focus for the Taskforce and acknowledges a collaborative approach is needed to address it.
"The need for healthy, secure-tenure affordable homes in our region remains acute, and has doubled in the past four years, to over 1000 families. I appreciate the collaborative focus on addressing this need – from our community housing providers, iwi trusts, central government, Council staff and the Taskforce.
"The recent grant to Nelson Tasman Housing Trust, with a four-week turnaround, shows how focused Council is on supporting the increase in Nelson’s stock of community housing as quickly as possible.”
Nelson Tasman Housing Trust Director Carrie Mozena says the upfront grant from the Housing Reserve is a game-changer.
“We can’t do what we do without significant support from Council and the community. This grant will leverage big contributions from other funders, so we can help more people in housing need. We applaud Nelson City Council’s initiative.”
The Trust is now working to confirm co-funding for this development, with applications to the Rātā Foundation ($200,000) and the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development’s $50 million Affordable Housing Fund ($1,900,000).What is Council’s Housing Reserve?
The Council’s $12 million Housing Reserve was established in November 2020 following Council's sale of 142 community housing units to Kāinga Ora. The purpose of the Housing Reserve is to support the provision of long-term affordable housing to the community.
So far, $5.05 million has been allocated, and the remaining $6.95m is available to support and enable community housing providers and iwi trusts with a presence in Nelson to deliver an enduring supply of social and affordable housing in the city.
Councillor Rachel encouraged organisations to apply.
"The Housing Reserve remains open for applications on a rolling basis, and I really encourage eligible organisations to apply as soon as feasible."
For more information on the housing reserve, see www.nelson.govt.nz/housing-reserve.

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