The Office for Regional Housing has secured land for four new houses in Moonta Bay that will be built to retain and attract key government workers such as police, healthcare workers and teachers.
The Office, which is part of Renewal SA, will now work to engage a builder to start construction early next year, with the first tenants expected to move into the two-and-three-bedroom homes by mid-2025.
The rental homes form part of a 30-property pilot program being delivered under the Regional Key Worker Housing Scheme – an initiative to create much needed supply in key regional areas including the Copper Coast, Port Augusta, Ceduna, Renmark and Mt Gambier.
Recently, Renewal SA also announced an innovative collaboration with the Tatiara District Council that will see an additional five homes, on top of those delivered in the pilot, built in Bordertown – another area that has been struggling with the regional housing crisis.
Minister for Housing and Urban Development Nick Champion said the homes will help the retention and recruitment of essential government staff while also easing the pressure on the private rental market on the Copper Coast.
“Our government is boosting regional housing supply to meet local communities’ needs and ensure key workers have a roof over their head,” Minister Champion said.
“We want the Copper Coast to attract teachers, police officers and health care workers and give them a place to live as they provide vital services to the region, which is why we are delivering these new homes as quickly as possible.
“The scheme being rolled out has already expanded and we will continue to collaborate with regional communities to deliver housing projects where they are needed most.”
Renewal SA Executive Director Residential Project Delivery and Assets Shane Wingard said the Office has been undertaking extensive consultation with country communities.
“We know our regions are the engine room of the state’s economy, and we are working closely with local councils, businesses, builders and investors to support a variety of regional housing initiatives,” Mr Wingard said.
“Regional growth is being hindered by a shortage of housing stock, with regional employers often unable to fill job vacancies due to a lack of suitable housing for additional workers.
“We know that, in the Copper Coast, there is a critical shortage of suitable housing to accommodate the teachers and health staff required to support the local communities.
“These strategically located sites will enable workers to live in close proximity to their workplaces or offer maximum flexibility for commuting to various towns within the region.
“The parcels can deliver housing quickly because they are appropriately zoned, and require limited subdivision, civil works or site clearance.”
Local builders are being called on to tender for the construction of the four new houses through www.tenders.sa.gov.au.
Once constructed, the properties will be head-leased to Government Employee Housing (GEH) which will coordinate tenancy for agency workers.
Following the delivery of the pilot program, it is anticipated that the Regional Key Worker Housing Scheme will be expanded to other regions and be available to organisations and businesses seeking to secure long-term access to new, fit-for-purpose housing for their workers.
The Office for Regional Housing was established as part of the state government’s A Better Housing Future initiative and is a key policy response to tackling the chronic housing shortage currently enveloping Australia.