Hous­ing’s big boost

Work be­gins on £2.4m pro­ject

East Kilbride News - - NEWS - Nicola Find­lay

So­cial hous­ing in East Kil­bride was given a boost when the first sod was cut on a £2.4 mil­lion de­vel­op­ment.

East Kil­bride Hous­ing As­so­ci­a­tion (EKHA) has started build­ing new prop­er­ties for the first time in al­most a decade.

And there was a cer­e­mony at Dun­das Place in the Vil­lage to mark work com­menc­ing on the site.

In part­ner­ship with Charles­fort Lim­ited, EKHA is con­struct­ing 18 two-bed­room flats at a to­tal cost of £2.4m, over £1m of which is a grant from the Scot­tish Govern­ment.

The Scot­tish Govern­ment plan to build 50,000 new af­ford­able homes by 2021.

The cer­e­mony was at­tended by East Kil­bride SNP MSP Linda Fabi­ani and the min­is­ter for lo­cal govern­ment and hous­ing, Kevin Ste­wart MSP, who wel­comed the new de­vel­op­ment in boost­ing af­ford­able hous­ing.

Ms Fabi­ani said: “It was a real plea­sure to be there with the hous­ing min­is­ter at East Kil­bride Hous­ing As­so­ci­a­tion’s sod-cut­ting cer­e­mony to mark the as­so­ci­a­tion’s new-build de­vel­op­ment in Dun­das Place – a great site right in the heart of the town.

“East Kil­bride HA is very spe­cial to me, as it was my ap­point­ment as their first mem­ber of staff which brought me to the town in the first place.

“East Kil­bride needs more so­cial­rented hous­ing and the lo­cal hous­ing as­so­ci­a­tion has much to of­fer.

“With grants from the Scot­tish Govern­ment and East Kil­bride HA’s ex­per­tise in hous­ing de­vel­op­ment, man­age­ment and main­te­nance, I am glad to hear that there are fur­ther plans for fur­ther small-scale de­vel­op­ments.”

EKHA chair Gra­ham Keith com­mented: “We are ex­cited and de­lighted to be build­ing again.

“This is some­thing we have been un­able to do for sev­eral years un­til the con­di­tions be­came less risky and much more favourable fi­nan­cially and po­lit­i­cally.

“We have had very pos­i­tive di­a­logue with South La­nark­shire Coun­cil, the Scot­tish Govern­ment, de­vel­op­ers and landown­ers, and other part­ners and po­ten­tial part­ners, and as a re­sult we have sev­eral small sites ear­marked for de­vel­op­ment.

“This will there­fore be the first of many, and their com­ple­tion will be a fit­ting way to cel­e­brate our 25th an­niver­sary next year.”

East Kil­bride Cen­tral North coun­cil­lor Joe Fa­gan, leader of the coun­cil’s Labour Group, said: “I wel­come this de­vel­op­ment and it’s good to see East Kil­bride Hous­ing As­so­ci­a­tion be­gin­ning work.

“We all know that we are in des­per­ate need of more af­ford­able hous­ing in East Kil­bride.

“It’s re­ally en­cour­ag­ing to see East Kil­bride Hous­ing As­so­ci­a­tion are do­ing their bit to meet this grow­ing need.”

But he added: “There is, how­ever, a lot more that needs to be done to bring down the wait­ing list for hous­ing in East Kil­bride.

“The pre­vi­ous South La­nark­shire Coun­cil ad­min­is­tra­tion pol­icy to build 1000 new coun­cil houses is a good start.

“But we do need our part­ners like East Kil­bride Hous­ing As­so­ci­a­tion to be part of the so­lu­tion as well.”

Dig­ging deep­Hous­ing Min­is­ter Kevin Ste­wart cuts the first sod with East Kil­bride MSP Linda Fabi­ani and East Kil­bride coun­cil­lor Joe Fa­gan look­ing on

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