National Trust criticises sale of public housing in Millers Point
More than 400 public housing residents will be moved from their Sydney Harbour foreshore addresses following a NSW government decision to sell off the valuable properties. The residents will be rehoused over the next two years. Just under 300 properties in the Rocks will be sold off, with the NSW government saying the money will be reinvested back into the public housing system across the state. According to the National Trust these include 200 historic houses.
These issues are controversial and the solutions are rarely black and white.
Minister for Family and Community Services Pru Goward has said the cost of maintaining heritage properties and rent subsidies in the area has become too high; and that money could be better spent on building more social housing, or investing in the maintenance of public housing properties across the state.
She has explained that “Maintenance on properties in Millers Point costs more than four times the average for public housing dwellings in NSW,” and that “In the last two years alone, nearly $7 million has been spent maintaining this small number of properties.
The minister has not provided details on the value of the properties but said government properties last sold in the area for an average of $1.3 million each.
The National Trust has criticised the government for what it described as a lack of consultation and that the social significance of the homes and their occupants has been overlooked.
Click here to read the National Trust Media Statement dated 27 March 2014.