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Glebe public housing plan comes under fire and before planning committee

CENTRAL Sydney planning committee will tomorrow consider plans by the state government for housing in Cowper St, Glebe. The public housing estate at Cowper and Elger Sts was demolished earlier this year but more than 50 per cent of the new dwellings planned will be privately owned reports James Groman in Central of 8 February 2012.

Rally at Cowper St last year

Rally at Cowper St last year

Last Wednesday Greens MP Jamie Parker met residents to discuss the proposal for the Glebe site.

He said such a loss in public housing was unreasonable when so many funds have been diverted into other sectors of the economy.

“Our argument is that $300 million was given in tax cuts to the gambling industry through registered clubs yet they say they don’t have any money to build public housing,” Mr Parker said.

“That tax rebate could have built hundreds and hundreds of public accommodation homes”.

The Greens MP said while on paper the site’s development plan looks like it will ease the public housing shortage, it is in fact making it worse.

“There were 167 dwelling there before for social housing,” he said.

“Now they are saying there will be 153 social dwellings built on the site plus 90 affordable housing which equals 243, which is great. But the 167 units that were there before were genuinely two or three-bedrooms whereas the 153 proposed dwellings are only one-bedroom.”

“By making Elger St over 50 per cent private, the O’Farrell Government has privatised over half the development, thereby contributing to housing stress and the decline of housing affordability,” Mr Parker said.

Central contacted the office of Family and Community Services Minister Pru Goward for comment however she had not responded in time.