25 new Coombs units boost public housing renewal

Released 21/12/2016

The ACT Government’s $550 million public housing renewal program reached another milestone yesterday with the handover of 25 new units in Coombs to Housing ACT.

Economic Development Director-General David Dawes said that tenants would soon move into the two-storey development of two-bedroom units, next to the local centre and close to bus routes and a primary school.  Some would relocate from the old Red Hill public housing precinct that was scheduled for demolition next year, and others would be from the general ACT Housing waiting list.

Mr Dawes said that the attractive development, featuring landscaped courtyards and open spaces, represented a better future for its tenants.  

“All units have wide doorways and corridors for accessibility and to allow ageing in place, and four are specifically adapted for people with disabilities. Each unit has a dedicated car-parking space, and there is plenty of visitor parking,” Mr Dawes said.

“The government is making good progress in replacing outdated, concentrations of public housing with new, smaller-scale quality accommodation scattered throughout Canberra. The new accommodation is more energy efficient and costs less to maintain. Most importantly, it will help to integrate tenants into their new communities and improve their health, education and employment opportunities.”

Mr Dawes said that the public housing renewal program was on target to provide 1288 new public housing dwellings by 2019.

A total of 200 dwellings have been completed and transferred to Housing ACT, with another 334 under contract. In addition, 483 dwellings are in the due diligence or planning stages, and the Taskforce has purchased another 280 from private owners.  

As well as its social benefits, the work of the taskforce is delivering a significant boost to the ACT construction sector and will create more than 2500 jobs over the life of the program.

Mr Dawes said that the program had broad community support.  Research earlier this year showed 83 per cent of Canberrans supported the renewal of public housing.

- Statement ends -

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