Council Waives Fees to Help Build New Social Housing in Redcliffe
Published 14 December 2022
Council has waived $220,000 in infrastructure charges and development application fees for Bric Housing, supporting their plans to build a new 18-dwelling accommodation block for people experiencing homelessness.
It follows the Mayor’s announcement in August that Council would help Community Housing Providers to deliver social and affordable housing by not requiring them to pay any development fees or charges.
“To say I’m thrilled is an understatement - I honestly can’t believe this initiative has been so successful so quickly, and I’m so excited that Bric Housing already has ground works underway on Portwood Street in Redcliffe,” he said.
“When I wrote to Community Housing Providers outlining the incentives available and offering to work with them, we were overwhelmed by their enthusiasm.
“This project is a great start, and I hope it will lead to many more.
“We all know Australia is facing a housing crisis and Moreton Bay is not immune.
“Statistically speaking Moreton Bay faces an unprecedented acceleration in homelessness compared to our neighbours.
“Between the 2011 and 2016 census homelessness increased 57% here.
“That’s faster than Brisbane on 39%, much faster than the Sunshine Coast on 6% and far too high above the Queensland average of 9%.
“The lack of social and affordable housing in our region is putting more and more people at risk of homelessness, already more than 1200 locals are already considered homeless.”
Bric Housing has been pioneer in the community housing sector for the past decade in the southeast region of Queensland.
CEO Jane West said the organisation's mission is to provide affordable homes to Queenslanders in housing need.
“This new accommodation in Redcliffe will be designed to provide good quality accommodation, and tenancy sustainment support, for 18 single people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness with the support of State Government funding,” she said.
“It's unusual and incredibly welcome for a Council to be so active in this space, given homelessness and housing are portfolios of the State and Federal Governments. It really is a pleasure to be working with a Council that’s been so proactive about doing what they can within their powers to respond to this very urgent need.
“I’d definitely encourage other Community Housing Providers to take up this opportunity with Moreton Bay Council, because we know areas like Redcliffe and Caboolture have had above-average rates of homelessness and this has significantly increased in recent years.”
Mayor Flannery warned that without a coherent plan at the state and federal level, Australia’s housing crisis will only get worse.
“There used to be a nation-wide routine annual public housing construction program about 25 years ago,” he said.
“But since 1996 we’ve seen the country’s population boom 40% while social housing stock has only increased 4% in that time, so the problem is clear.
“Our system has not kept pace with the pressure that’s being put on it, and that pressure’s increasing.
“That’s why in this year’s budget Council committed $1.5 million to building a homelessness support hub in Redcliffe with funding from the State Government.
“I was also very pleased to see that Brisbane Housing Company, with the State Government’s Housing Investment Fund's support, is investing in social and affordable housing in Redcliffe.
“The 84 single bedroom apartments planned as part of the Redcliffe Social Housing Project in Sutton Street will improve the lives of older people in the area.
“While these initiatives are steps in the right direction, more is needed across our region.
“I hope that by being proactive in approaching community housing providers, we can work with them on some immediate opportunities while we wait for a broader solution.”
Further information can be found on page 19 of the General Meeting Agenda for 14 December 2022 at: https://www.moretonbay.qld.gov.au/files/assets/public/council/meetings/2022/gm20221214-agenda.pdf