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Monday, June 29, 2015

New homes to be developed to replace old Housing Trust stock

LAUREN NOVAK POLITICAL REPORTER The Advertiser June 29, 2015 2:18PM Up to 90 new homes will be developed through a rebuilding program designed to replace old Housing Trust stock. Picture: Keryn Stevens •Housing trust homes painted before demolition •... or left empty •... or occupied by investors •... or rented out to tourists •... or left filthy UP to 90 new homes will be developed through a rebuilding program designed to replace old Housing Trust stock. In the first phase of the program, 65 Housing Trust homes will be demolished to make way for a mix of new social, affordable and private market housing across the city. Vacant lots will also be developed. Construction is expected to take about 18 months and generate 105 jobs. Housing and Urban Development Minister John Rau said the work was expected to deliver between 80 and 90 new homes. It marks the start of a long-term regeneration of 4500 pre-1968 Housing Trust homes over the next 15 years. The State Government will release nine expressions of interest for construction companies and not-for-profit organisations to develop the earmarked lots. Mr Rau said the works were expected to generate $22 million in economic investment. He said all but two of the earmarked 65 homes were already vacant and negotiations were underway with the two remaining tenants. The homes are in Kidman Park, Woodville Gardens, Elizabeth Park, Smithfield Plains, Melrose Park, Fulham and Christie Downs. Mr Rau said more than 60 per cent of public housing occupants were single tenants but a “significant proportion” of the homes had three or more bedrooms. He said the rebuilding program was about creating more relevant options but argued it would not add to the list of people waiting for a social housing placement. ================ Thousands of dollars spent painting homes to be demolished DAVID NANKERVIS The Advertiser June 25, 2015 9:00PM Public housing tenant Jolanta says she has received mixed messages from Renewal SA. Picture: Naomi Jellicoe THOUSANDS of dollars have been spent by the State Government to renovate a housing trust home it plans to demolish. The Government has admitted to spending $8000 to paint a vacant trust home at Derrick Place, Glenelg East, in February which it now wants to knock down. The adjoining trust home is also slated for demolition and with plans to move out the tenant, who as recently as last week was told her home too was to be painted. The Housing Trust Tenants Association and Opposition have slammed the property upgrade as a waste of taxpayers’ money. The trust homes at Derrick Place have been transferred from Housing SA to Renewal SA, the body which is overseeing the State Government’s plan to renovate 4,500 trust homes during the next five years. Renewal SA said one unit became vacant and was repainted as it “was originally planned to be sold’’. However, those plans have changed because Renewal SA said the two units “occupy a large block of land which provides a good opportunity for urban renewal’’. A Renewal SA spokeswoman said it is “in discussion with the tenant (in the other home) about moving to a location suitable for their needs, which would allow for the redevelopment of this site to create new housing opportunities.’’ While Renewal SA was unable to say how many other trust homes have been renovated before demolition in the past year, the Opposition fears the waste of money at the Glenelg East properties may not be isolated. Opposition social housing spokeswoman Rachel Sanderson said renovating a property that is slated for demolition was “bureaucratic bungling at its worst and a total waste of taxpayer’s money.” “With the Weatherill Government planning to redevelop thousands of housing trust homes in the near future it needs to lift its game quickly,’’ she said. The tenant of the Derrick Place property said she received a message on her phone voicemail from a company last week saying it would begin painting her home on Thursday. The Advertiser, which has heard the message, alerted Renewal SA which has since said there will be no upgrade and the painting firm told the tenant yesterday it will no longer be doing the job. The tenant Jolanta, who did not want her surname published, said she couldn’t understand why her property was to be painted when she has been told by Renewal SA she has to move because the home was to be demolished. Jolanta said she has received mixed messages from Renewal SA over her future accommodation, including her home would be sold, that it would be demolished and that she might be even be able to stay. Housing Trust Tenants Association secretary Tony Elmers said he sympathised with Jolanta’s uncertain situation and blamed a “bureaucratic stuff up’’ for the waste of money on the painting.

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