Council bosses have been urged to speed up the sale of land for new homes to be built on across Dundee – after falling behind on their housebuilding targets.
Just 62 affordable homes – offering low rent to people on modest incomes – were built in 2017-18, short of the 200 the council had planned. The authority has a strategy to build 1,000 by 2021.
Numerous families across the city are desperate to move to more suitable properties but feel stuck in their current homes due to a lack of supply.
Barry Lamont, a full-time parent to D-Jay, 9, and Rudi, 5, is keen to get out of his Hilltown home, which he shares with partner, Gemma, 25, who is also a full-time parent to their children.
Barry said: “At the moment we are confined to the multi. Rudi has mobility problems which are likely to get worse.
“He uses a wheelchair intermittently, but being in a multi, even the first floor is not ideal. It seems people are declaring themselves homeless so they jump the queue. My landing, for antisocial behaviour, is getting worse and worse.
“The council and housing associations need to realise families need homes – especially children with disabilities.
“You can’t overlook them, they are some of our most vulnerable people.”
Bruce Forbes, of Angus Housing Association, says there are issues around freeing up land for such developments.
He said: “At the moment we are going to build 32 houses in Mid Craigie and most of our developments have been in Whitfield. The problem we’ve got is the council is unable to progress with the sale of sites in Whitfield for us to develop.
“We could be building 120 more houses there but we can’t because they can’t sell the land.
“The council own all of the land there and if they were able to progress with that quicker then we would be able to get houses built there. We are building four-in-a-block-type houses and semi-detached-style properties which are hugely popular and we get bombarded with applications for them.”
The council insists it is making progress, with 527 units under construction.
Kevin Cordell, convener of neighbourhood services – which includes housing – said: “We recognise the need for new affordable housing, that’s why we have committed to building 1,000 affordable new homes.
“In Mill o’ Mains, Whitfield, Lochee and Hilltown, we have already built more than 200.
“We are getting to grips with the problem of supply and demand by rebalancing the amount and type of housing on offer to the people of Dundee.”