Terraced housing in the UK

Renfrewshire Council asked to approve £100m housing investment

Councillors at Renfrewshire Council are set to be asked to approve a new £100m package of additional investment into council housing in the region over the next ten years.

It forms part of a regional economic and social recovery strategy from the effects of Covid-19 and, if approved, the first phase of the housing investment would target eight areas across Johnstone, Paisley and Renfrew.

Communities, Housing and Planning Convener Councillor Marie McGurk said: “Coronavirus has underlined the importance of our home on our wellbeing and the need to live within a supportive community environment.

“This planned investment will provide a step-change in housing conditions for council tenants by enhancing properties inside and out, making them more energy efficient and creating safe, welcoming neighbourhoods.

“At each location, we will develop comprehensive regeneration place plans, engaging with tenants and the wider community to create places to be proud of through a mix of improvements and new homes, this approach will continue the recent investment by the council and housing associations which will see more than 1,000 affordable homes completed by 2022.”

Renfrewshire Council’s plans aim to create jobs and upskill employees, bolster business, invest in housing, tackle inequalities and improve the lives of people living and working in the local region.

The coronavirus pandemic has had significant impacts on people throughout the region, with nearly 300 deaths according to recent statistics. Similarly, the number of people claiming benefits rose by 80% at the height of the virus, while the local authorities received some 6,000 Covid-19 crisis grant applications.

Furlough support for Renfrewshire employees is estimated to equate to £115m and self-income support to almost £10m.

Renfrewshire Council leader Iain Nicolson said: “The pandemic has impacted on all parts of daily life and in some cases exacerbated existing vulnerabilities or created new difficulties. Many people and businesses have been impacted, through bereavement, loss of income, isolation and loneliness.

“Since the outset, council staff have been working tirelessly together with community groups and local volunteers as well as with national agencies to support people during these unprecedented times, and the collective response has been phenomenal.

“This work continues and while the true impact of the pandemic will take time to fully emerge, we have been carrying out detailed research and together with community groups, local businesses and economic leaders, we have been preparing our plans for recovery and renewal.”

The two-year economic recovery plan has been prepared with, and approved by, Renfrewshire’s Economic Leadership Panel, which pools business expertise from major local employers and skills and enterprise agencies.

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