East Suffolk Council eyes 50 new council homes per year
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Garage sites and new builds could be used as part of plans to create 50 new council homes each year in East Suffolk.
East Suffolk Council said it will assess existing land it owns, areas in need of regeneration like Kirkley Waterfront and buying existing homes, where it represents good value, as means of increasing the housing stock.
The council's housing strategy 2020-24 - discussed at the authority's cabinet meeting this week - said planning permission was already secured for 60 homes, while the authority's scrutiny committee suggested modular or pre-fabricated homes could help deliver properties in a shorter timescale.
Scrutiny committee chairman Stuart Bird, Conservative, said: "A lot of people's concepts of modular housing is post-war pre-fabs, but as we know technology has moved on so far.
"That will greatly assist us wherever possible bringing forward as many council homes as we can for our residents where they are desperately needed."
The council's strategy has also outlined measures to mitigate environmental impacts, as well as the need to meet its own design standards.
In his foreword to the strategy, which first emerged last year, cabinet member for housing Richard Kerry said: "This is the first time East Suffolk has had a strategy of this kind, underlining how important we think it is to improve our residents' quality of life by building new homes.
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"Like many councils across the country, we know that we must adapt our approach to housing development and increase our capacity to meet the undeniable need for new homes in our district.
"Our business plan and housing strategy have embraced the drive to provide more affordable homes and this housing development strategy confirms our commitment and approach to building and acquiring new properties and land in East Suffolk."
Councillor Peter Byatt, leader of the opposition Labour group said modern pre-fab homes had their place in communities and added: "Fifty is good, but anything beyond that is even better."