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Council takes over Linwood village

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 30/04/2017

The government is selling the 42-unit temporary accommodation village in Linwood to Christchurch City Council.

The units can remain until 2021 but may only be used by people displaced by the earthquakes, says Housing Minister Dr Nick Smith.

The government set up temporary accommodation villages on council reserves at Kaiapoi and Linwood in 2011 and Rawhiti in 2012 to provide accommodation for families while their homes were repaired.

The Kaiapoi village was decommissioned in August 2016 and the 20 units sold by public tender to commercial and social housing purchasers.

The government was in negotiations to sell the houses at Rawhiti and Linwood to the council when the magnitude 7.8 Kaikoura earthquake struck on November 14.

The 20 at Rawhiti units have been offered for sale to farmers affected by the Kaikoura earthquake. Agreements are in place for more than half and the relocations will begin this week.

The council will use the Linwood village for social housing tenants displaced during earthquake-related repairs and redevelopment and other residents displaced as a result of the earthquakes, Dr Smith says.

The Otautahi Community Housing Trust will manage the tenancies at Linwood on behalf of the council. Existing tenants will be able to remain until their repairs are complete.

The reserves will be remediated by the council when the village units are ultimately removed.

Decisions on the future use of the units at Linwood will be made by the council and the trust at that time.

The Linwood village has so far provided a temporary home for 560 households, with an average tenure of three-and-a-half months.

Demand for earthquake-related temporary accommodation has been falling from a peak in June 2014.

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