Minister inspects New Norfolk housing development

SUCCESSFUL partnerships between the Tasmanian Government and the state’s community housing providers were continuing to put roofs over the heads of vulnerable people, State Development, Construction and Housing minister Guy Barnett said at New Norfolk this morning.

Mr Barnett said Centacare Evolve Housing (CEH) had just completed 10 two-bedroom units in the third stage of a significant development at New Norfolk, for priority applicants on the Housing Register. These add to the 29 homes CEH has already delivered at the site.

“Homes Tasmania provided funding for the New Norfolk development of $135,000 per unit for 25 of the units and $145,000 per unit for 14 of the units – a total funding commitment of over $5.4 million,” Mr Barnett said. “The funding was delivered through three grant funding rounds under the Community Housing Growth Program, which will deliver 1,000 new social housing units around the State by the end of 2023.

“The units were built by CEH’s building and construction social enterprise St Joseph Affordable Homes. All units have been built to the ‘silver’ level of the Liveable Housing Design Guidelines, meaning the properties ensure future flexibility and adaptability to avoid more costly modifications if required.”

Mr Barnett said Centacare Evolve Housing was one of the state’s Tier 1 Community Housing Providers and manages about 2900 social housing properties around the state, including more than 1,200 on behalf of Homes Tasmania. The New Norfolk development was just one of numerous projects CEH is currently undertaking with hundreds of units in its construction pipeline across the state, and this demonstrated that the Tasmanian Government’s social housing construction program was working.

Anna Bamforth, of Homes Tasmania, left, James Norman and Linda Buza, of Centacare Evolve Housing, Guy Barnett MHA and Sam O’Brien, of St Joseph Affordable Homes.

“The Tasmanian Government recognises the considerable demand for housing in recent years and Tasmanians can be assured that we are responding by delivering the most ambitious and comprehensive social and affordable housing program in the state’s history,” Mr Barnett said.

“We are funding a 10-year, $1.5 billion housing package which is being managed by our new housing authority, Homes Tasmania, which began operation on December 1, to deliver 10,000 new social and affordable homes by 2032. But we know there is more work to do, and we recognise many Tasmanians are doing it tough and need our support right now.

“That is why we also invest over $36 million each year on wraparound services to ensure those who need help now are getting the services they need. This includes funding for 17 specialist homelessness services, as well as crisis shelters and supported accommodation. In addition, $6.9 million has been allocated specifically for our ‘Safe Spaces’ and connected support services.”

Anyone at risk of homelessness can contact Housing Connect, 24 hours a day, seven days a week on 1800 800 588.

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