Australia’s First Tiny Home Project in NSW
2 August 2016 at 11:21 am
Tiny Homes Foundation (THF) has received development approval to build what is believed to be Australia’s first tiny house project for homeless women and men, including young people and the elderly.
The pilot project next to Gosford Hospital on the NSW Central Coast will consist of four tiny homes, a common lounge, a common laundry and workshop and community vegetable gardens.
“A home is not just a roof overhead it is a springboard under your feet.” THF co-founder and CEO David Wooldridge said.
He said THF’s model is based on a “housing-first” solution supported by a network of training, employment and social support services.
“We believe in ‘housing first’ not housing only. It provides a great foundation to build on,” Wooldridge said.
He said THF had collaborated with like minded partners such as Clayton Utz (lawyers), NBRS+Partners (architects), Chase Burke & Harvey (surveyors) Wilson Planning (town planning), The Skills Generator (employment & training) and TAFE Outreach (education).
“As the latest strategy to increase the availability of ‘affordable housing’ each 14-square-metre home has a finished cost of less than $30,000 includes full bathroom and kitchen, embraces solar efficient design and is easily assembled and disassembled,” he said.
“However, building tiny houses is one thing but what makes the THF initiative groundbreaking is the fact that it is council approved, low cost, replicable and features Australia’s first ‘equity participation scheme for tenants’ whereby accommodation payments not applied to the cost and maintenance of the project will be available to THF tenants as needed for future housing related expenditure creating a pathway from homelessness to self support.
“Solving homelessness is a question of will. Will we do it or won’t we? It can happen within the next three to five years – if we all really want it to.”
Wooldridge said that as an incentive to get others to join the effort to solve homelessness THF will be making all its plans, documentation, and processes “free access” to others who are able to replicate the project in their state or region.