Real Deal wants specifics on affordable housing plans

March 9, 2024 BY

The Real Deal Geelong alliance will host a forum next week to discuss and present community-designed solutions to the housing crisis to decision-makers. Photo: SUPPLIED

THE Real Deal Geelong alliance is calling on the state government to clarify how many of the new homes slated for Waurn Ponds will be specifically allocated to social and affordable housing.

Premier Jacinta Allan confirmed last week that up to 400 new homes would be built on the site initially intended for the 2026 Commonwealth Games village in Waurn Ponds.

Of this number, 72 have been earmarked for social and affordable housing, representing 18 per cent of the development.

The Real Deal Geelong alliance, comprising a coalition of 13 community organisations, faith groups and unions, had previously advocated for 30 per cent of homes built at the site to be allocated to social and affordable housing.

“We are pleased to see that there has been an allocation of affordable and social housing announced by the Premier last week,” Noreen Nicholson from St Bernard’s Church Belmont said.

“However, we seek clarity on how many homes are classified as affordable versus social homes and when these will be delivered, as there is dire and desperate need for more social housing in Geelong.”

The group will host a housing action forum next week, with local MPs expected to attend.

Community stories on the impact of the housing crisis will feature strongly, along with community-designed solutions including those developed by the alliance.

Cloverdale Community Centre chief executive Liz Bonner said the housing policies developed by the Real Deal Geelong alliance in collaboration with researchers, community leaders and experts, would ensure the most vulnerable in the community are not left behind.

“The housing crisis exacerbates the existing disadvantages faced by the most vulnerable members of our community, particularly in the northern suburbs.

“We have invited Colin Brooks to attend our upcoming housing forum and are really looking forward to local state MPs Darren Cheeseman, Chris Couzens and Ella George attending.

“Our emerging coalition is enthusiastic to be at the table as civil society partners in ensuring that the Waurn Ponds development meets the needs of the community, as well as working together on other concrete solutions for our communities in Geelong.”

The forum will be held at Geelong West Town Hall on Thursday, March 14 from 7-8.30pm.

For more information, or to register for the event, head to arealdeal.org/geelong