McCausland welcomes new Helm Housing homes for East Belfast

27 August 2014

Social Development Minister Nelson McCausland has cut the first sod of a new £3.7million Helm Housing scheme on the Upper Newtownards Road, Belfast.


The development is being built on a site previously occupied by a former car sales forecourt and when completed, will comprise of 32 two bedroom apartments for families and the active elderly. The scheme is being developed by Helm with part funding from the Northern Ireland Executive, through the Department for Social Development, and is due for completion in October 2015.


Speaking on site, Minister McCausland said: â??One of my key objectives as Housing Minister is to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to access good quality accommodation. These new homes once completed will be a real, practical outworking of that commitment.


â??In an area where there continues to be a high housing need, these apartments will take families and the active elderly from the social housing waiting list and provide them with a new modern home.â?


The Minister continued: â??Helm Housing is to be congratulated for constructing these new homes and bringing this vacant site back into use for the benefit of the community. I look forward to returning next year and viewing the completed scheme.â?


The two x three storey blocks will be built to high energy efficiency levels with Lifetime Homes and Secured by Design accreditation in place. One block will provide 20 apartments for the active elderly with the other block consisting of 12 apartments for families.


Michael McDonnell, Chief Executive Officer of Helm Housing said: "Helm Housing's development at Upper Newtownards Road will provide housing for 96 people, including elderly, families and individuals in 32 purpose-built apartments. With a total investment of nearly £4million, construction is expected to be completed by October 2015 and the project is being funded jointly by the Northern Ireland Executive, through the Department for Social Development, and private finance sourced by Helm Housing.


â??The project is one of a number of new developments at various stages of planning and construction across Northern Ireland which underline our organisation's commitment to the creation of thriving and empowered communities."


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