UK news DUP MLA's concern for tower block residents ahead of demolition plans last news
MetiNews.Com - DUP MLA Robin Newton has raised concerns of residents of Housing Executive high-rise tower blocks after they were ear-marked for demolition or disposal.
Breaking News ! "DUP MLA Robin Newton has raised concerns of residents of Housing Executive high-rise tower blocks after they were ear-marked for demolition or disposal. Mr Newton said that many residents were worried about where they would be rehomed in the future, with housing provision not meeting demand.In July Communities Minister Caral Ni Chuilin confirmed her department's plan was to demolish, sell-off or refurbish all 33 Northern Ireland Housing Executive high-rise tower blocks. The plans were first proposed in 2018 and agreed to by the Housing Executive in March 2019 and the Department for Communities in August 2019.In a response to a written Assembly question from Mr Newtown the minister outlined the Housing Executive's 'Tower Blocks Action Plan'.Phase one of the plan will see the demolition or disposal of 14 "short" term blocks within a one to five year time period. Under phase two demolition will be carried out on seven "medium" term blocks in a six to 10 year period with remedial works carried out in the interim. In phase three demolition will be carried out a point "beyond a 10 year period" of 12 "long" term blocks with improvement works carried out as required. Plans to demolish Monkscoole House in Newtownabbey and Latharna House in Larne have already been approved by the department. Other plans have been delayed due to the inability to carry out local consultations as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
.East Belfast MLA Mr Newtown described the plans as "ambitious" given the time elapsed since the initial announcement and the pressure on public finances.In 2019 the Housing Executive estimated decommissioning the tower blocks and rehousing tenants could cost £225 million over the next 30 years.Mr Newton said it was not just an issue of the tower blocks themselves, but of when the new-build homes will be ready for residents who are impacted."In east Belfast there have only been 132 new homes constructed within the past three years, and there are many current residents of tower blocks who are concerned about the future," he said."The minister will need to outline when new homes will be ready for residents who would be displaced by the plans for demolition of the towers."Every week my office deals with single people, senior citizens and families who are in need of suitable housing. With demand already high, the Minister must announce how she intends to ensure those on the waiting list can be accommodated alongside those who would be displaced by plans for tower blocks."The Department of Communities and Housing Executive have been contacted for comment."
Source = MetiNews.Com