Report to tell district-wide housing story
A draft report on the real housing need on the Kāpiti Coast was presented to Elected Members and Iwi representatives at a Council workshop yesterday.
The draft report summarises the in-depth qualitative, quantitative, and iwi-led research conducted as part of Council’s housing needs assessment, and will be used to help set priorities for action. It also includes the results of the community housing survey of late 2021.
Mayor K Gurunathan says he is grateful for the communities’ contributions to this mahi and looks forward to sharing this invaluable resource soon.
“This report will tell our district’s true housing story in a way that is clear, accurate, and sobering,” Mayor Gurunathan says.
“Until now we have relied on other parties, outside of the Kāpiti Coast, to tell this story so I’m excited to soon have this resource to help focus our efforts to address the housing need in Kāpiti.
“Council would like to thank our iwi partners, our community partners, and the 1,500 plus community members who shared their housing stories with us over the past six months. This work is about more than addressing the housing need, it’s about creating better lives and stronger communities.”
Housing portfolio leader Councillor Rob McCann says the draft report concludes the time for action is now and greater coordination and continued collaboration is an essential part of this.
“There has been significant housing stress in Kāpiti for some time now,” Cr McCann says.
“Council, iwi, and other community stakeholders have taken collective steps, such as this assessment and regular meetings with relevant agencies, to help focus Government attention on the growing need in our communities.
“While there’s no quick fix, this report gives us strong evidence and a better understanding of the need. We will continue to advocate to Government and others, to take targeted actions that will help make a difference. In plain English, that means encouraging the Government to increase their investment in emergency and social housing in our community so they can meet the actual need which is now documented in the report.
“While Council has taken the lead so far, to create a more inclusive variety of housing options in Kāpiti and to build stronger communities, we need a coordinated ongoing response across the whole housing system.
“The reality is that without adequate housing there can be no wellbeing. Almost every day I’m hearing stories of housing stress and the impact it’s having on people of all ages and all walks of life. I look forward to sharing and discussing the report with our community and other stakeholders soon.”
Group Manager of Strategy, Growth and Recovery Natasha Tod says the housing needs assessment is a critical part of Council’s work to address the housing challenges in Kāpiti.
“Council has prioritised housing in its Long-term Plan 2021-41, and this assessment will help to centre us as we start to take a bigger role in this space.
“To help provide further focus for our ongoing work in housing and make sure we’re taking the right actions at the right time, we’re also preparing a housing strategy. This has been informed by the housing needs assessment and will outline our approach to housing in Kāpiti, and what we plan to do in the short, medium, and long term. The housing strategy will be considered by Council in May 2022.
“Work in some areas is already underway. Recently, we finalised our growth strategy to ensure we grow well, and we’re currently consulting on draft district plan changes to enable further intensification in residential areas and urban centres and align with Government direction.”
The draft housing need and social impact report is being finalised and will be formally received by Council mid May 2022. After this it will be available as a resource for all to use.