Affordable Development Outcomes was appointed in late May to develop the Policy, following the provision of grant funding by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP). The initial stage of the project encompassed research into the local housing market and trends, the demand for affordable and social housing, and opportunities to address shortfalls of housing stock, particularly in infill areas with access to existing infrastructure and services.
The responses received to both public and organisational surveys have exceeded expectations, highlighting local conditions and opportunities, and reflecting growing awareness and concerns around the issues and impacts of housing insecurity on both individuals and the community. A number of people and companies have come forward to offer their assistance and expertise.
Council also held a highly successful workshop on 28 June, attended by representatives of the region’s largest registered Housing Association, Beyond Housing, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Committee for Greater Shepparton, the Ethnic Council of Shepparton and District Inc., The Bridge Youth Service, Rumbalara Aboriginal Cooperative, and the Greater Shepparton Foundation, as well as local real estate agents and developers, a private investor, an architect, Councillors, and Council officers.
Greater Shepparton City Council Director Sustainable Development Geraldine Christou said “it was inspiring to see such a response from the community, and heart-wrenching to hear some of the stories that have been shared over the course of the consultation. Housing shortages can affect anyone; even people in full-time employment can be unable to gain secure housing in our competitive rental market,” she said.
“Council is looking forward to partnering with local organisations and the community to support the development of accessible and affordable homes for our residents,” she said.
All of the input received is now being considered by Council and Affordable Development Outcomes to inform the draft Affordable Housing Policy. Further public consultation on the draft Policy will be undertaken in the coming months.
For more information on the Affordable Housing Policy visit our webpage, or contact Council’s Building and Planning Department on 5832 9730.