Public housing units to open this year

Published 7:00pm 9 February 2023

Public housing units to open this year
Words by Kylie Knight

A new $10 million, 18-unit public housing complex is expected to open later this year at Redcliffe, with construction in full swing.

State Communities and Housing Minister Leeanne Enoch and State Member for Redcliffe Yvette D’Ath toured the site today, speaking with construction workers and partner Bric Housing.

The State Government will cover $9.1 million of the total cost, with Bric Housing providing the land worth almost $1 million.

Construction began in October 2022 and is expected to be finished in October this year.

Ms Enoch says the units will be built to platinum and gold standard under Livable Housing design guidelines, meaning they will be suitable for older people and those with a disability. Features include wider hallways and doors.

“This complex will also be clean and green, with a state-of-the-art solar system which will distribute energy from rooftop solar panels to each unit,” she says.

Ms D’Ath says the project will support 26 full-time equivalent construction jobs.

“I’m proud that we are partnering with the community housing sector to deliver this important housing project for the Redcliffe community,” she says.

“This social housing project is in addition to the over 80 units being delivered in Redcliffe in partnership with Brisbane Housing Company (Sutton St) as part of our $2 billion Housing Investment Fund.”

Bric Housing CEO Jane West is grateful for the State Government’s support of the project.

“We are delighted to play our part in meeting the need for high quality, affordable homes for those in need,” she says.

Moreton Bay Regional Council supported the project by waiving $220,000 in infrastructure charges and development application fees.

Public housing units to open this year

Meeting a growing need

Ms Enoch says the government is building more of these complexes because of the growing need to provide accommodation for older people and those with mobility issues.

“For a large proportion of the units that will be here … they will be tenants that come from the social housing register. They (Bric) will be working very closely with the local housing service centre to get the right mix of tenants for the kind of offering that we have here,” Ms Enoch says.

“They will help to manage and support the tenants that are in this place. That model is working really well right across the state and today’s announcement about the second round of the Housing Investment Fund, which is now $2 billion, gives us more opportunity to do exactly that.”

She says the State Government is spending $3.9 billion in social and affordable housing in total.

“Through the Quickstarts Queensland program, we will invest $50.2 million to commence 176 new social homes in the Moreton (Bay) region, including Redcliffe, supporting more than 159 full-time equivalent construction jobs,” Ms Enoch says.

Ms D’Ath welcomed today’s tour and announcement.

“This complex of 18 units, plus the 82 at Sutton St … that’s 100 extra units in just 24 months in Redcliffe. We know that it will fill up straight away, we know that we’ve got our challenges like everywhere else as far as homelessness in this area,” she says.

Public housing units to open this year

Responding to criticism

Today’s announcement came as the State Opposition launched an attack on the Government’s delivery of the Housing Investment Fund it labelled a “Headline Housing Hoax”.

It said during the past two years the Government had not “unveiled a single home it has built” and accused it of cutting investment in social housing.

“The Member for Everton Tim Mander oversaw a reduction of 428 social homes in the state in the period he was the Minister responsible for housing,” Ms Enoch says.

“The fact of the matter is the Housing Investment Fund, when we first established it … the first of its kind in Queensland … (it was) $1 billion in the first instance.”

She says that resulted in the partnership with Brisbane Housing Company and the project at Sutton St.

“Since we came to office, we have completed more than 4000 social housing dwellings and we have commenced over 5000 of those. In the last year-and-a-half, we’ve seen well over 1200 commencements as a result of our commitment and we continue to see these sorts of projects come out of the ground very quickly,” Ms Enoch explains.

She says the Housing Summit gave the government an outcomes report that is driving action across all government agencies to provide housing now and in the future.

Ms D’Ath added: “In the seven years we’ve been in government, we have been opening unit complexes across the peninsula so there has been investment that whole time. This is taking it to a whole other level and that’s great”.

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