Homes for Queenslanders to deliver for North Queensland

Published Wednesday, 07 February, 2024 at 02:23 PM


Deputy Premier, Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment
The Honourable Cameron Dick

Minister for State Development and Infrastructure, Minister for Industrial Relations and Minister for Racing
The Honourable Grace Grace

Minister for Housing, Local Government and Planning and Minister for Public Works
The Honourable Meaghan Scanlon

  • Townsville and North Queensland to benefit from new Homes for Queenslanders plan
  • Government-owned land in Pimlico selected to be investigated for its suitability for a new Ground Lease pilot
  • Plan backs region’s renters and first home buyers, as well as more funding for homelessness service providers and more social housing

A Townsville site has been earmarked for pilot program to unlock more social and affordable homes in North Queensland.

A government-owned site in Pimlico has been earmarked to pilot a new Ground Lease Model, which will support the delivery of social and affordable housing.

The program is part of the Miles Government’s new Home for Queenslanders plan which will deliver one million more homes across the state by 2046.

The land at Pimlico is close to the Townsville Youth Foyer, due to be completed in April.

Under a Ground Lease Model, public land is leased for a fixed term to a project group that develop, finance and build new housing before handing the assets back to the Queensland Government once the term has finished.

This is an example of how Homes for Queenslanders is pulling on every lever to deliver more social and affordable housing across North Queensland.

This will be backed by a $1.25 billion downpayment investment over five years to contribute to ramp up public and community housing delivery in Queensland to more than 2,000 homes on average per year by 2028.

In addition to this, the Homes for Queenslanders plan also delivers more support for the region’s renters and first home buyers.

For renters, this includes a ban on rent bidding, a portable bond scheme allowing tenants to transfer their bond when moving from one rental to another, a Bridging Bond Loan to help with the cost of a new bond, a new rental sector code of conduct and additional support and expanded eligibility for supports and services.

First home buyers in the region will be assisted to get into the market, with Queensland First Home Buyer Grants boosted up to $30,000 and Housing Finance Loan income eligibility expanded to help more regional Queenslanders finance a home.

The region’s homelessness services are also getting a boost as part of a 20 percent funding uplift.

This will see an additional $10.5 million provided to the region’s service providers including Jupiter Mosman Homeless Service, Homelessness Service Hub – Townsville, Iona Youth Shelter and Sisters Inside.

A dedicated Critical Response Team will also be set up to work directly with people experiencing homelessness in the region, and the services that support them to secure accommodation when it is needed.

It comes as a new social housing complex in Pimlico is the latest to be completed in Townsville.

Now ready for tenants, the new complex features seven one-bedroom social housing units, including three built to Gold and Platinum standards under the Livable Housing Design Guidelines catering for people with varying mobility needs.

In addition, construction is forecast to begin in the coming months on another three social housing projects in Rasmussen in partnership with Yumba-Meta Limited, delivering a total of 28 new social homes.

Combined, the four projects represent a $10 million investment and will support more than 33 full-time equivalent construction jobs.

Quotes attributable to Deputy Premier, Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment Cameron Dick:

“We know the future of North Queensland is bright, that’s why the Miles Government’s Homes for Queenslanders plan is addressing housing stress now and planning for the future. 

“It’s great to see new social housing being completed in Townsville, and construction start on new projects in the months ahead.

“Construction will also start on a further 312 social homes in North Queensland by July 2025 and in April the Townsville Youth Foyer will be completed, providing stable housing and support for 40 vulnerable young people.

“This is on top of the almost 600 homes our Government has delivered in North Queensland since 2015, with 60 currently under construction and a further 52 under contract.

“The Ground Lease Model is another lever our Government is pulling to deliver even more housing for North Queensland as we strive to deliver one million more homes across the state by 2046.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for State Development and Infrastructure Grace Grace:

“This pilot is another example of the state government's development agency, Economic Development Queensland, exploring new and innovative ways to unlock land.

"Every single part of the Miles Government is working together so we can build more homes for Queenslanders.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Housing, Local Government and Planning and Minister for Public Works Meaghan Scanlon:

“Homes for Queenslanders will build more homes faster, support Queensland renters, help first homeowners into the market, boost our social housing big build and work towards ending homelessness.

“Projects such as these homes being delivered here in Townsville are an example of what Homes for Queenslanders sets out to achieve.”

Quotes attributable to Townsville MP Scott Stewart:

“We know Townsville is a fantastic place people want to live and this creates pressure on the housing market which is why this government is investing in social housing in the city,” Mr Stewart said.

“Every Queenslander deserves safe, secure, and affordable housing and we work hard to tackle this complex issue because every person deserves a place to live.”

Quotes attributable to Thuringowa MP Aaron Harper:

It’s fantastic to be delivering new homes for people in Rasmussen because the Upper Ross is one of the fastest growing parts of Townsville,” Mr Harper said.

“We are working closely with Yumba Meta who are a fantastic and well-respected service provider who know how important housing is for Townsville.”

Quotes attributable to Mundingburra MP Les Walker:

I’m proud to be part of the Miles Government that is delivering more social housing in Townsville and supporting renters and people trying to get into the housing market through our Homes for Queenslanders plan.

“I will always fight to make sure there is investment in infrastructure like housing in Townsville and Mundingburra.”

Explainer/fast fact and or further information:

Anyone who needs housing assistance can contact the Townsville Housing Service Centre on 4724 8500 during business hours or call the 24/7 Homeless Hotline on 1800 474 753.