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This article was published in Mirage on 26 August 2021 Click here to read the full article

Housing continues to be top priority for Griffith City Council

Housing continues to be a top priority for Griffith City Council, with an ongoing focus on how the region can best address shortages.

Council and Argyle Housing were invited to present their innovative and ambitious Affordable Housing project Griffin Green, at the virtual Inland Growth Summit – Housing 2021 on 13 August.

General Manager Brett Stonestreet explained Council’s role in securing a $6 million Federal grant to supplement the $3 million contributions from Council and Argyle. The bold $12 million initiative will provide 20 town houses and 42 serviced lots in south Griffith. Civil works have commenced, with the project expected to be delivered by December 2022.

Mr Stonestreet said a highlight of the Summit, hosted by Regional Development Australia (RDA) Orana and RDA Riverina, was an address and Q&A from Minister for Water, Property and Housing, Melinda Pavey.

“Minister Pavey delivered a brief overview on the recently released first ever NSW Housing Strategy as well as the new Government Property Index. The NSW Government has made certain data regarding government-owned properties freely available to the public through the Government Property Index. It is part of their commitment to open data and to allow members of the public to put forward proposals on how Government-owned land might be used to deliver an economic stimulus to counter the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Mr Stonestreet said.

“The main theme of the Summit was that the Housing Shortage is a state-wide issue that needs to be tackled collectively, requiring multi-tiered solutions from all levels of government, the private sector and community housing providers.”

The Inland Growth Summit also indicated that City-dwellers have been flocking to the regions for a country change during the COVID-19 crisis to look for employment and therefore housing.

Since adopting the Griffith Housing Strategy in November 2019, Council has commenced addressing issues and initiatives identified in the strategy and good progress has been made.

This progress includes:

– To enable suitable development, Griffith City Council amended the Development Control Plan (DCP) to facilitate the development of diverse, affordable and lower cost housing by including amendments to Floor Space Ratios, providing for reduced parking requirements for Residential flat buildings and Multi dwelling housing. The removal of height restrictions and reduction of private open space per ground floor have also been applied to dwelling requirements in the CBD.

– Council is encouraging increased development of residential flat buildings through re-zoning amendments to the Local Environmental Plan (LEP).

– Education and promotion of New Generation Boarding Houses.

– Development Approval of a 129 lot Manufactured Housing Estate.

– Incentivising the construction Granny Flats (Secondary Dwellings) by implementing an Affordable Housing Rebate on Secondary Dwellings.

– Council also implemented rebates on Section 7.11 and 7.12 contributions for developers who demonstrate their development proposal addresses the affordable housing issue identified in the Griffith Housing Strategy.

– In January 2020, Council donated land to local community housing provider, Argyle Housing for the construction and management of “Affordable Housing” units. A DA to construct four double storey dwellings in Wakaden Street was lodged in September 2020 and a tender for construction is currently underway.

– Council has also initiated an additional innovative affordable housing partnership project with Argyle Housing in November 2019. Subsequently, Council and Argyle were then successful in receiving funding from the Federal Government in June 2020 for a $12M housing and subdivision project to re-develop Dave Taylor Park in south Griffith. After extensive community consultation a DA was lodged in July 2021 for 32 Single Dwelling Lots, 3 Multi Dwelling Lots, 2 Open Space Lots & 1 Lot for a Community Centre. A Tender for the construction of 20 double storey town houses is currently underway. To view the development application and make a submission visit Council’s Website. Civil works to accommodate the new development has commenced.

– The completion of the Lake Wyangan Master Plan that includes adequately sized lots for multi-dwelling housing, as well as small and large residential lots.

– Approval and civil infrastructure for new Collina suburb 400 lot subdivision.

As part of the continued push, Council recently made submissions to the NSW Regional Housing Taskforce as well as contributed to Local Government NSW’s Parliamentary Enquiry into the social housing shortage.

/Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here.

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