A FORMER hostel for the homeless in west Leeds is set to become the focal point of an innovative new affordable housing scheme.
The Salvation Army’s Mount Cross hostel on Broad Lane, Bramley, which provided a haven for thousands of people for 85 years, was closed in September 2012 following a Leeds City Council review of temporary housing services.
Building work has now started on a Salvation Army Housing Association (SAHA) scheme to convert the derelict Mount Cross building and create 29 one and two-bedroom apartments.
And 54 new homes are to built on land next to the Mount Cross site to create a total of 83 affordable homes. The new-build homes will be a mix of one and two-bedroom flats and two and three-bedroom houses.
Salvation Army chiefs say the new development, which has been funded by The Homes and Communities Agency, will feature a community facility.
Tony Bacon, director of asset management at SAHA, said: “Our new development on Broad Lane in Bramley is more than an affordable housing scheme.
“Central to the project is creating a community which we believe will be achieved by working closely with residents and the local area who will be encouraged to commit their time and skills to benefit everyone.”
Mr Bacon said the new development will build on the success of Copper Beech Nursery, which the Salvation Army runs on the site.
He added: “It won’t just be residents of the new development who will be building a community here. Families who use the nursery will also be invited to participate and will be given incentives to get involved.
“We believe this approach will help the project to make a real difference to local people.”
The new development is expected to be finished next summer.