AN ambitious strategy, outlining the Council’s plans to continue addressing housing need in the city, to upgrade existing homes and regenerate communities, maintain momentum in tackling homelessness and support tenants and residents impacted by the pandemic, will be considered by Cabinet next week.
The Council’s annual Housing Revenue Account (HRA) Business Plan also sets out how the authority will focus on rolling out innovative decarbonisation projects across the city, deliver a zero-carbon housing development in Rumney and create an onsite construction training hub to train up to 750 people a year and offer employment or apprenticeships to over 200 people.
Cabinet will consider the HRA Business Plan for 2021/22 at its next meeting on Thursday, March 18. As one of the 11 stock retaining authorities in Wales, Cardiff is required to present an “acceptable” HRA Business Plan to the Welsh Government each year, setting out its purpose and vision as a social housing landlord and how the Council aims to achieve the objectives and standards set out in the plan.
The impressive plans represent a multi-million pound investment in housing and communities in Cardiff including:
£60m for new homes, including £35m for innovative housing schemes; £19m on improving existing council homes; completing the modernisation of community living (sheltered housing) complexes; delivering three new family homeless centres, a single homeless assessment centre and two large projects for clients with complex needs and supporting tenants and residents disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.
Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities, Cllr Lynda Thorne, said:
“This year’s HRA Business Plan is bursting with ambitious projects and schemes to create much needed, good quality, affordable housing in the city, improving existing stock and regenerating our communities so they are great places to live, well-connected and sustainable, with high-quality urban design.
“We’re setting high standards for ourselves. The new homes we are building will be highly energy-efficient, helping to tackle fuel poverty and enabling us to move towards the council’s aspiration to build to a zero-carbon standard.
“The progress we have made tackling homelessness in the city is something we can be extremely pleased with. The new plan outlines how we intend to build on this success with the creation of our family homelessness facilities, specialist services and accommodation for single people who are homeless and an emphasis on rapid rehousing.
“Innovation is a strong thread throughout the plan and following a past year like no other when innovation and adapting to different methods of working have been essential to the delivery of services, it’s crucial we continue to embrace new and inventive ways of meeting residents’ needs.
“I am in no doubt that a number of our services have provided a real lifeline for many residents since the start of the pandemic. Services such as online events and activities to help combat social isolation, money advice, into work advice and housing solutions intervention at a time when many residents will have faced difficult challenges for the first time, has really made a difference.
“We know that these problems will continue to be with us for some time and we will continue to do everything we can to help individuals and families across the city detrimentally impacted by the coronavirus crisis.”