Council seeks alternatives for delivering affordable housing
Shetland Islands Council yesterday (6 July) decided to abandon the existing tendering process on the proposed construction of 76 affordable houses at Hoofields in Lerwick, in order to take advantage of new opportunities which have opened up for funding such developments.
This includes the possibility of partnership arrangements with housing agencies and private firms and could lead to considerable savings for the council.
Political Leader Josie Simpson said:
“There have been a number of changes in the whole area of funding affordable housing over the past year, since we began the tendering process on this project. The council’s financial position has obviously become more difficult, but we have had a change of Government, and that Government has introduced a number of initiatives and incentives to increase the housing supply. Funding arrangements too are considerably different.
“We have the possibility now of meeting our housing needs more effectively and cheaply, perhaps in partnership with other housing agencies and private companies. It would be foolhardy and irresponsible not take advantage of this.”
The council’s policy remains to deliver affordable housing to Shetland, but it is hoped that new funding arrangements will lead to opportunities which could, Mr Simpson said ”simply do the job better and more cheaply, while safeguarding in the future local employment.”