On 6 February 2023, Kingborough Council agreed in-principle to donate land in Kingston to the Hobart Women’s Shelter to provide long term housing for women and children.
Kingborough Mayor, Paula Wriedt said she was delighted that Council had unanimously decided in-principle to make a large block of land in Kingston available for housing for women and children who needed long term accommodation after leaving crisis care.
“The Hobart Women’s Shelter presented at the Greater Hobart Mayor’s Forum in April 2022 last year, asking Councils to consider any suitable land to gift them, to enable them to secure grant funding to build long term accommodation,” Cr Wriedt said.
“Although Council does not have large areas of land that could be developed, this particular block which under the Planning Scheme is zoned as Community Purpose Use was identified as being suitable for affordable housing.
“The central location has easy access to public transport, sporting facilities, schools, and services and is perfect for the development of long-term housing for women and children.
“Unfortunately, the need for long-term and crisis accommodation in Tasmania is only growing.
“Women living in crisis accommodation after fleeing domestic violence situations are staying longer at these facilities as the tight rental market makes it difficult for them to find permanent homes.
“With crisis accommodation at peak capacity it’s alarming to know that 8 out of 10 women who turn up at the Women’s Shelter in Hobart are turned away as they are full.
“The homes, once built, would provide longer term housing for women transitioning out of crisis accommodation.
“A formal proposal was developed by the Hobart Women’s Shelter and presented to Council, requesting gifting of the land.”
Cr Wriedt said that the Hobart Women’s Shelter had given permission for the location of this proposed development to be released as it was for long-term housing and not crisis-care.
“The location of crisis-care facilities is not something that is provided publicly for security reasons, but this accommodation is not in that category.
“The land is zoned Community Purpose, which means that is suitable for community housing, subject to meeting the requirements of the Planning Scheme.
“Councillors unanimously agreed on Monday night that we wanted to support the development of social housing in Kingborough and gifting this land is one of the practical ways we can do this.
“As this is public land that we are disposing, the Local Government Act requires us to go through a process that includes notifying the public and calling for community feedback prior to 6 March 2023.”
Council must then consider any feedback before making a final decision.