£110m boost for city’s affordable housing plans

New Dunedin Canmore housing development in Muirhouse Edinburgh.  Pic: Bill Fleming
New Dunedin Canmore housing development in Muirhouse Edinburgh. Pic: Bill Fleming
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A HOUSING association is set to spend £110 million building 700 new homes in Edinburgh and the Lothians over the next five years – while also upgrading others.

Dunedin Canmore, one of the country’s biggest social landlords, will spend £80m constructing new houses and more than £30m upgrading existing properties.

The announcement came as work got under way on 80 new affordable homes in Muirhouse – consisting of 64 homes for social rent and 16 for mid-market rent, catering for people on “modest incomes”. Developers said the project would be a mix of one and two-bedroom flats, traditional four-in-a-block flats and larger family houses.

Councillor Joan Griffiths, the city’s new housing leader, hailed the new development as a “brilliant example” of teamwork between the council and a housing association.

She said: “It’s great to be here to mark the start of work on Dunedin Canmore’s new development in Muirhouse.

“This will provide much-needed affordable housing in the north of Edinburgh, with homes for social and mid-market rent.

“This site is a brilliant example of how the council and our housing association partners are delivering on our commitment to build 16,000 new affordable homes in Edinburgh over the next ten years.”

Dunedin Canmore, which owns and manages almost 8000 homes and is part of the Wheatley Group, is currently building another 162 houses on sites across Edinburgh and the Lothians.

And plans are being developed for a further 353, with new proposals also being compiled for hundreds more.

The new affordable homes include 111 in Craigmillar, 21 at Seafield Road and 30 in North Berwick – the first to be built by Dunedin Canmore in the seaside town.

Meanwhile, planning permission has been granted for 32 houses in Gorebridge, 44 in Wallyford, 40 in Gorton Loan, 24 in Hyvots and 12 on Gilmerton Dykes Road.

Dunedin Canmore chair Tom Mitchell said the schemes would benefit thousands of residents across the city.

He said: “The homes in Muirhouse are a great boost to the local community. I look forward to seeing these – and hundreds more – being completed as we work with our partners to tackle the acute shortage of affordable housing in Edinburgh.

“Complementing our ambitious new-build programme is a comprehensive plan to refurbish and upgrade our existing homes.

“In due course, thousands of people will benefit from having modern, comfortable, fuel-efficient affordable homes.

“These plans and programmes are one of the many tangible benefits of Dunedin Canmore being part of the Wheatley family.”

Scottish Government officials previously said Edinburgh faces a “significant shortfall” in housing over the next five years.

More than 25,000 extra houses are needed by 2026, figures indicate – with affordable homes one of the top priorities.

alistair.grant@jpress.co.uk