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Leeds City Council’s £40m plan to help meet housing shortage

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  • by Joanna Wardill
 

Council chiefs will next week be asked to approve spending £40m in a bid to boost its housing stock to help meet the city’s rising demand.

A report to Leeds City Council’s executive board – which meets on July 17 – said the current waiting list for social housing stands at about 27,000 applications.

A comprehensive plan has been drafted to build hundreds of new council homes which the council said will be the largest amount of homes brought to the city for 30 years. As well as building new homes, the report identifies a number of ways to reach a target of 400 new council homes over four years. These include using the money from Right to Buy sales, freeing up suitable council-owned brownfield sites for developments – or possibly buying new sites, converting derelict buildings, buying off-plan or already built homes from developers, and buying back previous council houses sold under the Right to Buy scheme.

Council leader, Coun Keith Wakefield, said: “Providing affordable homes is absolutely vital for the viability of the city. Developing new council housing, whether through new build or other methods of acquiring property, is a really positive way for us to meet housing need.”

Coun Peter Gruen, executive board member for neighbourhoods, planning and support services said: “We’re completely committed to ensuring we meet the need for more council housing in the city.

“We’ve already had the fantastic news that the inner city Leeds PFI project has just been given the go ahead to bring 388 new homes to this area of Leeds, along with the refurbishment of a further 1,245 council homes and we want to continue to build on this success.”

He added: “It’s the first time in years that we’ve been able to deliver such a large number of council homes to our city.”

 

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