neighbourhood melbourne
The New Epping estate is based on the idea of a ’20 minute neighbourhood’. Image – Canva
  • Project will feature 79 one-bedroom and 72 two-bedroom houses
  • Riverlee is the developer
  • Part of the Social Housing Growth Fund

As part of an ongoing program to increase the number of social housing dwellings in the state, the Victorian Government has announced the construction of 150 social houses has begun in Epping.

The project will feature 79 one-bedroom and 72 two-bedroom houses in the New Epping development. Riverlee is delivering the houses in partnership with the Whittlesea City Council, Ramsay Health and Haven Home Safe who will own and manage the social housing homes.

The development is being modelled on the concept of a ’20-minute neighbourhood’. This model enables residents to access most daily needs within a 20-minute return walk – along with safe and local transport options.

Generally speaking, a 10-minute walk is 800 metres away using standard walking distance measures in this context.

Richard Wynne, the Minister for Housing, says the project is a clear example of an effective relationship between the public and private sectors.

“Our unprecedented investment in safe, secure housing will change lives – not only putting a roof over people’s heads but creating thousands of jobs as we rebuild from the coronavirus pandemic.”

“The private sector has an important role to play in the development of more social housing for Victorians – this is an example of that partnership delivering real benefits for the community.”

Richard Wynne, Minister for Housing

The funding for the project comes from the $1 billion Social Housing Growth Fund, which the Government says facilitates partnerships between Government and community housing, private, not-for-profit and local government sectors.

The local Member for Thomastown, Bronwyn Halfpenny, said she was proud of the development.

“This exciting development is delivering homes for people and families who need them. In places close to services hospitals shops and jobs.”

“Having a safe and affordable place to live has never been more important, which is why we’re so proud to partner in projects like this”

Bronwyn Halfpenny, Member for Thomastown

The Social Housing Growth Fund is part of the Victorian Government’s $5.3 billion Big Housing Build. Although it is set to be the largest investment into social infrastructure, there are warnings it may not be enough to meet the demand for such housing.

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