More low-cost housing needed

Pitfalls in government policy


North Sydney Council community director Martin Ellis.

THE State Government is being called upon to do more to provide affordable rental housing.

North Sydney Council’s community director Martin Ellis commended the government’s current policy but pointed out the pitfalls.

“The State Government’s Affordable Rental Housing State Environmental Planning Policy (SEPP) is a great start but more needs to be done,” he said.

“For instance, a privately run boarding house can be let at unaffordable rents, defeating the whole purpose of the SEPP.”

Mr Ellis helped open a new council-funded boarding house in Wollstonecraft last week.

The project called April Place is a joint venture with Link Housing.

All the residents in the seven unit block are over 60 and some have a disability.

Mr Ellis said it was important to develop boarding houses to relieve homelessness and housing stress.

“We value affordable housing options in particular projects like April Place because of their efficient use of space and at the same time, creating a small community,” he said.

Each studio has its own kitchen, bathroom and balcony — with two wheelchair accessible apartments on the ground floor.