Of the 31 whānau moving in, 27 will be moving out of motels and other temporary accommodation into these modern homes that have just been completed. They bring with them 24 tamariki who will now have a warm, dry, secure place to call home.

This is a significant milestone for Gisborne, and for whānau and their tamariki in need of housing, says East North Island Regional Director Naomi Whitewood (Ngāti Porou, Ngāpuhi). “It is Gisborne’s largest social housing development in decades and has been a boost for the local economy.”

“We are committed to delivering the extra houses in Tairāwhiti that have been budgeted for in the Public Housing Plan. These new homes will make a real difference meeting some of the demand for more housing in Gisborne. They will also make a real difference for the whānau moving in. We know that having a stable home is important to all aspects of a person’s life – from education and employment to physical and mental health.”

Karen Bartlett, Regional Commissioner for the Ministry of Social Development, agrees. “We know temporary and emergency accommodation is not an ideal way to raise a family and moving 24 tamariki into a secure and stable home is a reason to celebrate. MSD congratulates Kāinga Ora, we are so pleased to work alongside them to see new families moving into these homes right away.”

The whānau that get to call this new development home will be a mix of younger families, as well as older people and others with accessibility challenges, adds Naomi. “Twenty-seven of the 31 homes have been built to full universal design standards (FUD). Some come with ramps, wider doors and accessible bathrooms.”

The single-storey duplex and standalone homes are a mix of one-bedroom, two-bedroom, and three-bedrooms.

TW Property have built the houses and managed the project from the beginning. Now they are complete and ready to live in, Kāinga Ora has bought the homes for whānau in need.

“By purchasing from developers, we can increase the number of homes available to house people as quickly as possible. Kāinga Ora worked proactively with TW Property to ensure the homes were built to a high standard and will meet the needs of our customers and communities.”

Maximising the number of local tradespeople involved and ensuring the economic benefits of such a large development are enjoyed within the region, was a priority, says Leah MacDonell at TW Group. “The project has been positive for local employment. More than 70 job opportunities have been created for Gisborne tradespeople. We have signed up several apprentices who have been working on this development, equipping them with invaluable skills while bolstering the local workforce.“

One of the initial challenges TW Property had to manage was ensuring that there was no extra pressure on Gisborne’s stormwater network that would contribute to future flooding. “Thirty-one 2000L attenuation tanks have been installed on the site. These capture stormwater runoff and then slowly release it back into Gisborne’s stormwater system.”

Some of the new homes in Gisborne

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Page updated: 8 April 2024