Nelson City Council has approved $2 million in grant funding from Phase Two of its Housing Reserve to respond to the urgent need for housing in Nelson.

In a meeting on Thursday, 25 August, Council agreed to grant $1 million to the Nelson Tasman Housing Trust for the development of 76 Dodson Valley Road, and $1 million to Habitat for Humanity Nelson for the development of 181 Rutherford Street.  

The Council’s support for the projects also supports the community housing providers in their bid to access further funding from the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) $50 million Affordable Housing Fund.  

Chair of the Urban Development Subcommittee Deputy Mayor Judene Edgar says the allocation from the Council’s Housing Reserve will help those whose lives are affected by the housing shortage. 

“The housing need in Nelson is huge and the recent floods and landslips have caused even further pressure with people out of their family homes and rentals. There are families who are desperate for affordable accommodation. We need to urgently build Nelson's housing capacity. 

“These grants support trusted community housing providers to deliver safe, well-designed, affordable homes for our community.” 

Nelson Tasman Housing Trust (NTHT) Director Carrie Mozena says the funding is timely support that helps their project access further Government funding. 

“We really appreciate this Housing Reserve grant from Nelson City Council. The grant will help us to secure almost $3 million in further funding from the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, which enables NTHT to build 10 new affordable rental homes for families on low-to-modest incomes. 

“These homes will serve working families for at least 50 years and make a key contribution to our region’s economy and wellbeing,” says Mozena.  

Habitat for Humanity Nelson General Manager Nick Clarke says they are grateful and delighted to receive funding from Nelson City Council. 

“The need for housing is acute in our city, with a wide cross section of our community needing decent homes. This support enables Habitat, in partnership with Unite Church, to contribute to addressing this need. 

“The grant is also catalytic and will attract additional financial support. This ensures the provision of at least 15 one-, two- and three-bedroom affordable rental homes in the central city for members of the Nelson community,” says Clarke.  

The HUD Affordable Housing Fund is for not-for-profit groups looking to develop new, affordable rental homes. Nelson Tasman is among six geographical areas in high need of affordable rentals eligible to apply for the $50 million available in round one.   

“The $2 million allocated from Council will help much-needed projects get off the ground and support community housing providers to access further funding for their projects. This means the money invested will go even further for the community,” says Deputy Mayor Edgar.  

“Nelson Tasman Housing Trust and Habitat for Humanity have a strong track record of delivering both affordable rentals and public housing. We are confident this is a great investment for Nelson." 

The Council’s $12 million Housing Reserve was established in November 2020 following Council's sale of 142 community housing units to Kāinga Ora. The purpose of the Housing Reserve is to support the provision of long-term affordable housing to the community.  

Phase One in April 2022 awarded $850,000 to NTHT to develop five affordable rental homes at 99 Muritai Street in Tāhunanui, and $1 million to Habitat for Humanity Nelson to develop 14 dwellings at 623 Main Road Stoke.