9 May 2020

Construction starts up again at public housing work sites

5:34 pm on 9 May 2020

Builders are back in business as the construction of state houses and affordable homes ramps up again.

Masked construction workers are pictured at a building site on the first day of the easing of restrictions in Wellington on April 28, 2020, following the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak. -

File photo. Photo: AFP

When Covid-19 alert level three began, work resumed on 240 Kāinga Ora public housing work sites across the country.

Next week, hammer guns will be firing at 60 more sites.

Housing Minister Megan Woods said it was good news for the economy.

"The government wants to get the economy moving again and people back to work. Our house building programme creates jobs and homes, both of which are so essential at the moment," she said.

"Getting back to work is helping to keep cash flowing through to more than 100 build partners and contractors, and that has huge flow-on for the rest of the economy."

Of the 300 Kāinga Ora sites, about one third are in the Auckland region with another third in the Wellington region. The remainder are in Christchurch, Hamilton, and spread throughout other locations around the country.

Woods said that 7000 further homes were in the planning, feasibility and procurement stages, with over 3000 to be contracted and have construction start in the next 12 months.

"As we recover from the impact of Covid-19 we recognise how important it is for the economy to get as much activity going as possible, so Kāinga Ora will be ensuring a greater volume of housing development gets underway as soon as possible," she said.

"The Kāinga Ora restart also sends a signal to the whole industry that it's time to pick up the tools again."

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