State Housing Action Network spokesperson John Minto says the government’s announcement of a major regeneration project for East Porirua has the hallmarks of Auckland’s Tamaki regeneration project whereby low-income residents and families are being displaced from Glen Innes, Point England and Panmure to make way for new homes.
Minto says, "The previous Labour government, which began the Tāmaki transformation, made almost identical promises to Tāmaki in 2008 that they are making to East Porirua today."
“The winners in Tāmaki have been property developers and the middle class. Nothing we can see indicates anything different for East Porirua.”
Yesterday Housing Minister Phil Twyford and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced a $1.5bil investment in East Porirua. The project will include 2,900 renewed state houses, 150 new state houses and 2,000 Kiwibuild and market homes in Ascot Park, Waitangirua, Cannons Creek and Ranui.
Minto says the announcement is a "bad omen" for the existing tenants and families in the area.
“The announcement of a mere 150 extra state houses added to the public housing stock elsewhere in Porirua appears to be an attempt at a reassuring sop to the locals.
“The housing crisis across New Zealand is sharpest for low-income tenants and families and yet the focus of this development is the use of large swathes of state housing land to build Kiwibuild homes for the children of the middle class.”
Te Kāea made contact with the Housing Minister's office for a response.