Nelson Tasman Housing Trust’s Doug McLearie, left, with chairman Dave Johnston, centre, and director Carrie Mozena on the site of the new development. Photo: Jessie Johnston.

Housing trust to build homes in Stoke

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Six “affordable” housing units are set to be built on a former state housing site in Stoke.

The Orchard St site previously held two-storey Housing New Zealand buildings, which were torn down around 18 months ago after being six years unoccupied.

Nelson Tasman Housing Trust purchased the land from Housing New Zealand and has just been granted resource consent for four one bedroom homes and two double bedroom houses.

Nelson Tasman Housing Trust chair Dave Johnston says the news has been welcomed.

“We had a meeting just around the corner with some of the residents. At the time our plans hadn’t arrived, so we had packets of biscuits and cakes and we used them to show the residents what it would look like and they were all really excited about it.”

For what is a relatively small space, the trust has managed to make the most of the land available, including parking spaces for the new residents.

“From our point of view, we’d like to see this as the beginning of the regeneration of this whole area,” says trustee Doug McLearie.

“There’s very old houses on large blocks of land and, with this sort of development, you can make much better use of the land and house more people in warmer, user-friendly houses.”

Nelson Tasman Housing Trust is a registered Community Housing Provider, offering rental homes at 70-80 per cent of market rates.

“We currently have 38 homes housing 114 people, and can usually offer only about six opportunities a year to new tenants, so the Orchard St development is very significant for us,” says the trust’s director, Carrie Mozena.

“These flats will be a real step up for most of the new tenants – they are affordable, fully insulated, double glazed, fitted out with heat pumps and each unit has a garden for indoor-outdoor living.”

Construction will soon be underway, starting with a new fence to contain the site, with the development due for completion in April 2017.