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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 09 Hansard (Tuesday, 21 August 2018) . . Page.. 3313 ..

MS FITZHARRIS: I reject the assertion that Miss Burch has made. If she could reflect on my previous answers, she will note that I was not aware of this until a couple of minutes ago. I have said that I will take the question on notice and find out more detail, particularly on what might have been happening in a very busy place on any given day.

Housing—affordable housing scheme

MS ORR: My question is to the Minister for Housing and Suburban Development. Minister, can you update the Assembly on initiatives being funded under the affordable housing innovation fund?

MS BERRY: I thank Ms Orr for the question. Yes, I can update the Assembly. The affordable housing innovation fund was established to support new approaches to affordable housing. The fund encouraged innovative affordable housing projects that have been established in other jurisdictions around Australia to see whether they can be just as successful in Canberra.

The successful applicant for round 1 of the $1 million innovation fund was announced today by me. Work will start on these projects to get them off the ground. An amount of $230,000 has been awarded to Community Housing Canberra to establish an affordable rental real estate initiative. Modelled after Victoria’s HomeGround Real Estate, property owners will be able to have their properties managed by CHC and leased to individuals and families who are in need of affordable housing.

There was also some discussion in the chamber about this initiative a few weeks ago. It will be good to see property owners take up this challenge and offer their properties under this model. An amount of $50,000 has been awarded to two different groups to advance co-housing initiatives. Successful applicants were Environmental Collective Housing Organisation, ECHO, and Smart Urban Villages.

This is a great opportunity to test innovative sustainable design of co-housing initiatives that have been taking off in other parts of the country. The creation and funding of projects under the innovation fund form part of the ACT Greens and ACT Labor parliamentary agreement that this government is delivering on.

MS ORR: How will projects like these help grow the provision of affordable housing in Canberra?

MS BERRY: Projects under the housing innovation fund aim to increase the supply of dedicated affordable housing for rent or purchase through the support of ideas from the community. These innovative ideas may be ones that typically are not financially viable under normal market conditions or have difficulty attracting priority investment. By demonstrating innovative ways of growing the supply of affordable homes through the fund, government and industry may look to expand and continue specific housing delivery models into the future.

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