June 15 2022
Ensuring we all have access to a safe home
Housing affordability, availability and diversity is a real challenge across our region, as it is for many regional cities.
During recent community consultation for our Albury Local Housing Strategy, affordability was identified as the highest priority area - ensuring we offer support to households who are finding it hard to access safe and appropriate housing, especially in a tight rental market with record-low vacancy rates.
The second highest priority theme was diversity and the need for a better mix of housing types, as we see growth in the number of single-person households locally. Our community told us they are looking for a broader choice of dwelling types including units, duplexes and terraces, as housing preferences continue to change.
Under a landmark agreement with the NSW Government, we'll be working together with the Land and Housing Corporation (LAHC) to deliver an estimated 540 new social and affordable homes, and around 700 homes for the private market in Albury.
This collaboration will see us look at all options to prioritise areas for the redevelopment of ageing social housing stock within our city, undertake master plans for these areas thereby ensuring those in greatest need have a safe place to live, in an appropriate location, close to quality services and facilities.
We’re also encouraging local businesses and contractors to register on the NSW Procurement system to have the opportunity to be pre-qualified for the supply and construction process if these projects progress. Local contractor information sessions will be held by LAHC in the near future.
With the Albury Local Housing Strategy currently under development, we’ll deliver a clearer planning framework to guide and influence the provision of the right kinds of housing, where and when it is needed. Following the initial stage of consultation and feedback, we’re now working on bringing the draft strategy together, and look forward to receiving further feedback from the community in the coming months.
Whilst increasing the availability and affordability of housing will require a collective effort and commitment across all levels of government, Council can encourage and support a range of housing options through our local land use planning policies. We can also advocate to the NSW Government, and build partnerships such as the agreement with LAHC to help deliver more social and affordable housing projects.
We look forward to continuing to work with our community and the NSW Government to ensure there is a range of quality housing options to cater to the needs of our growing, changing households.