Newcastle Council has formally endorsed a $12 million social housing funding agreement with the NSW Government.
The agreement sets out a commitment from the state government to match Council’s contribution of around $2 million annually for the next three years which will be invested in the delivery of new social and affordable house in priority locations like Wallsend.
Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said the endorsement by councillors is a significant step towards fast tracking social and affordable housing outcomes for people in Newcastle, while also supporting investment and jobs growth.
“With over 10,000 families suffering from housing stress across the city, housing affordability in Newcastle is close to crisis point, which is why this issue is a priority of the Newcastle 2040 Community Strategic Plan and the Newcastle Local Housing Strategy 2020,” Cr Nelmes said.
NSW Minister for Planning and Minister for Homes Anthony Roberts said the agreement would deliver positive social and affordable housing outcomes for the people of Newcastle.
“The NSW Government is currently investing more than $250 million to fast-track the delivery of more social and affordable housing across the state – but we can’t do it alone,” Mr Roberts said.
Research undertaken by City of Newcastle shows one in three people don’t believe there are enough diverse housing options for everyone across the city, and one quarter of people don’t believe they can afford a reasonable standard of housing in the area.
The latest forecasts show the population is set to increase by 41,150 residents to 202,050 by 2041 in the Newcastle local government area (LGA), which will stimulate demand for almost 20,000 new dwellings.
“The NSW Land and Housing Corporation (LAHC) owns 4,300 social housing dwellings across the Newcastle LGA, and City of Newcastle is working in close partnership with LAHC to fast-track projects such as the renewal of existing properties in Waratah West and Wallsend,” Cr Nelmes said.
“Construction has already commenced on the redevelopment of two ageing homes on Landa Parade Waratah West that will be transformed into a low-rise, accessible building that features six two-bedroom units and four one-bedroom units for up to 16 residents.”
“City of Newcastle and NSW Land and Housing Corporation wants to ensure future social housing continues to be built in the right places with good access to jobs, services, public transport and open space, and through this partnership with the NSW Government our organisations will lead the way to deliver better outcomes for the community.”