Fuelled by an ambition to invest in product, environment and people, One Manchester’s Chief Executive Dave Power is set to bring more than just housing with Hulme Living.
Since the conception of One Manchester on 1 April 2015 – a merger between Eastlands Homes and City South Manchester Housing Trust – Mr Power has hit the ground running; sticking to what he announced he would do at the launch of the new organisation.
From working with people living at Sanctuary Supported Living’s Victoria House on a literacy project that produced a poetry book on homelessness, to the helping to save and improve a library and community resource centre (The Place at Platt Lane) – One Manchester is weaving itself into the community.
In August, One Manchester announced that it is to build 170 homes in Hulme – Hulme Living – a mixture of two-bed apartments and three-bed townhouses for rent in the city centre’s suburb. In the plans for the project, it was revealed that there wouldn’t be social housing and the organisation has received condemnation as a result, with critics citing “The gentrification of Hulme is well underway”, Miss McInnis wrote.
“Social housing has not been funded by the government since 2011. No one is building social housing in the country anymore. What they are building is affordable housing but that is 80 per cent of the market rent, social housing is within the region of 50 per cent of the market rent”.
“City Council owns the two sites where Hulme Living will be, on Royce Road and Leaf Road, and they wanted a market-rented offer to extend what they have currently in the city centre. We are limited by what city council think is important for them in terms of growth of the city and their housing strategy”.
MCC Press officer said, “Often if an affordable element isn’t included it’s because the development is in an area that has a balanced level of social rented housing stock already. There’s actually no legal definition to what affordable homes mean. It’s not always just social housing – it can also mean rents below market value”.
This is the first new build scheme proposed by One Manchester since the organisation formed earlier this year from the merger.
Investing £23million in Hulme Living, One Manchester will be choosing its contractors based on “price and quality”, Mr Power said. It’s about who will pay back into the community, whilst “Investing in opportunities for local people to benefit from local investment”, Mr Power added.
In conclusion, the Chief Executive said that “We can’t control the welfare system. We can’t control the wages people earn, but what we can control, in our housing, is what fuel they burn if we invest in that properly. This will enable people’s financial resilience and their choices to become a bit better”.
TNT News Yasin Chinembiri