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Government and Salvation Army dedicate new social housing site

Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett and Salvation Army Territorial Commander Commissioner Robert Donaldson have dedicated a new social housing site in Royal Oak, Auckland.

As announced by the Government last week, more social housing from the community housing sector in Auckland is expected to deliver over 500 new places, with 87 places provided by The Salvation Army. 50 of these will be new one and two bedroom units built on the currently empty site in Royal Oak.

“I’m thrilled to be here to dedicate this site today. Over the next couple of years, this bare piece of land will be transformed into modern, healthy housing for our most vulnerable Aucklanders,” says Mrs Bennett.

“I’d like to thank The Salvation Army for making it available and for the ongoing partnership with the Government to provide support for those who most need it."

“We are delighted to be able to partner with the Government to develop quality housing that is affordable for tenants and that allows us to continue growing our social housing stock in a sustainable manner,” says Commissioner Robert Donaldson.

Under changes introduced in May 2015, the Ministry of Social Development is able to negotiate contracts for the Income Related Rent Subsidy up to 25 years, giving Community Housing Providers a Government backed, guaranteed income stream to support developments. A portion of the rental subsidy is being provided to The Salvation Army upfront to support construction of the Royal Oak development.

“These new properties are intended primarily for over-55-year-olds on low incomes, and will mean we can house more people with the Government’s Income Related Rent Subsidy,” Commission Donaldson says.

The next steps for The Salvation Army are to confirm architectural plans and appoint a project development team. The building process is a priority, with tenants expected to take up residence in 2018.

“Community providers like The Salvation Army have fantastic frontline skills and knowledge and are well placed to support vulnerable people in their area,” Mrs Bennett says.

Tags: social housing

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