Social and affordable housing project reaches new heights in Wickham

Social and affordable housing project reaches new heights in Wickham

A 16-unit social and affordable housing complex, under construction in Wickham, has been made possible by a partnership between the NSW Government, City of Newcastle, and Compass Housing.

Newcastle Lord Mayor, Nuatali Nelmes, joined Compass Housing’s Chief Corporate Services Officer, Lyndall Robertshaw, last month to inspect progress as the building topped out at seven storeys.

Lyndall said the development will have eight, one bedroom and eight, two-bedroom units to suit current demands for inner-city living. Half of the units will be affordable housing for key workers, with capped rent, and the other half used for social housing.

“Rent has been rising sharply across the Hunter over the past 12 months and the need for properties that are affordable to key workers and people on low incomes is greater than ever,” Lyndall said.

“Projects like this one show what’s possible when different levels of government work together and leverage the know-how of the community housing sector.”

Council’s contribution comes from the Building Better Cities program. Nuatali said the initiative would help alleviate housing stress and provide more options for vulnerable people.

“This joint venture means more homes close to transport, jobs, and other amenities and will ensure greater diversity of residents in our inner-city community,” she said.

The new units are part of the 493 properties across 19 Hunter and Central Coast sites Compass is delivering as part of the NSW Government’s Social and Affordable Housing Fund (SAHF).

Minister for Families, Communities, and Disability Services, Gareth Ward said the project will provide safe and secure housing for people on low incomes.

“These new homes will not only provide people with a roof over their head, but access to support that will help them improve health and general wellbeing,” Gareth said.

He said the SAHF is on track to deliver more than 3,400 homes across NSW, with 1,958 dwellings completed and more than 1,000 under construction.

Compass has engaged a range of local builders for its SAHF projects. Lyndall said this creates local jobs and a boost to the local economy.

“Building more social and affordable housing is an effective economic stimulus that also brings many social and community benefits,” she said.

Central Coast and Hunter based firm, North Construction & Building, is building this development.

North Director, Ray Millar, said it is good to once again be a trusted building partner of Compass Housing, who is engaging local contractors to deliver this project.

Ray said more than 300 people so far has worked on the site during the project.

“We are very proud to be part of another Compass Housing project aiming at providing additional affordable housing options in our community,” he said.

“Thanks to a great client for their trust in us, their respect, and to a great group of sub-contractors who are working hard to bring this project to fruition.”

The architecture for the project is being provided by local firm, CKDS. Newcastle based; Catalyst Project Consulting is the project’s Superintendent.

Compass will provide ongoing property management and tenant support when the tenants start to move in around August this year.

IMAGE | North Construction & Building Director, Ray Millar, Newcastle Lord Mayor, Nuatali Nelmes and Compass Housing’s Chief Corporate Services Officer, Lyndall Robertshaw (left-right).

Home in Place

Home in Place is a Tier 1 community housing provider and registered Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) provider. It currently manages more than 7600 social, affordable and disability housing homes in NSW, Queensland and New Zealand.

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