Fresh look at local housing
THE social co-housing concept plans for Wangaratta’s Railway Precinct brings a breath of fresh air in property development to the rural city.
Medium density, ecological friendly housing with some shared facilities and overnight rental above and commercial space out front all on the one site is certainly radical for the outer fringe of the CBD.
Whereas different elements of this development are not strangers to Wangaratta it is revolutionary on the one site and opens up fresh opportunities for other 21st century thinking in local property attitudes.
While many might think that bringing ‘city style’ living to the country seems to contradict the reason for a tree change there are some who relocate to the country who prefer to live in urban style neighbourhoods.
What we don’t know as yet is the cost of the apartments and although there is likely to be demand for this unique development from middle income professionals it would be good to see similar thinking for more affordable housing and rentals.
Wangaratta, like most of Australia, has been suffering for a number of years with a severe shortage of affordable housing and rentals forcing many individuals and families to either pay more than they can afford for somewhere safe and comfortable to live or to relocate in search of secure accommodation.
Too many also have no choice but to live on the streets and it is not always young single people caught in this malaise.
Medium density quality affordable housing is desperately needed and it would be inspirational to see a developer put forward a similar concept for this social housing development to cater for that deserving market.
It would be equally impressive if the council created incentives or placed covenants on certain developments to guarantee some affordable housing construction was to take place.