Construction of relief homes is underway for flood-devastated Westport residents, with the first houses expected to be delivered next month, Housing Minister Dr Megan Woods said today.
Buller District Council has granted land-use consent for the $17.08 million Temporary Accommodation Village to go ahead.
Twenty-two houses are being constructed offsite, with 20 to be placed on Alma Road and two to be deployed elsewhere in Westport.
Contracts for building the homes have been awarded to two companies – South Peak Homes in Westport will build 10 homes, with Christchurch company Laing Properties to construct a further 12.
“This initiative demonstrates this Government’s support for regional communities and our commitment to provide safe, warm homes for people while they continue to get back on their feet after the devastating flooding of last year,” Minister Woods said.
Work on the $17.08 million village is underway and a new access road has been completed. On site, piling and civil infrastructure works is progressing well, the Minister confirmed.
The development’s plans also include a new cycle and walkway next to the existing road bridge to separate pedestrians and cyclists from vehicles along Alma Road.
“Temporary accommodation enables people to remain in their community as they repair and rebuild their homes following an emergency event and our Government recognises how crucial this is.”
“In Budget 2022, we committed $6.95 million to ensure the Temporary Accommodation Service (TAS) can keep providing this critical service as we continue to see an increase in the severity and frequency of events like the devastating Westport floods,” Minister Woods said.
A year after MBIE’s Temporary Accommodation Service (TAS) was activated on 21 July 2021 in response to the Westport flooding, 40 residents and families remain in a dozen portable cabins on site on their properties, 20 are in being housed in motel rooms and a further eight residents are in TAS-procured houses.
A further six households are not currently in TAS accommodation but have registered a future need, the Minister said. TAS registrations are still open for flood affected households in the Westport community who need accommodation support in future.
Families are expected to be able to take up residence in the first temporary accommodation village homes in October.
The TAS funding provides for construction of the homes, connection of services, and landscaping, as well as the overseeing landlord, tenancy and property management operations.