New, modern accommodation for homeless people
Hackney Council will carry out extensive renovations of five buildings in Hackney in order to provide much-needed modern accommodation for homeless single people in the borough, the Council’s Cabinet agreed last night (17 March).
The work will see a rolling programme of refurbishment and reconfiguration of hostels in Finsbury Park, Seven Sisters Road, Green Lanes, Queens Drive, and Woodberry Grove, with the first rooms due to open this summer. The majority of the work will create self-contained units, with ensuites and kitchenettes, and insulation improvements, and with a number of specially designed rooms for those with high needs. The high specification finish will include wifi, CCTV, 24-hour security and hostel managers on site, in line with all new Council hostels.
The terms of the lease, approved in principle by Cabinet, will help the Council meet the record demand for temporary housing for rough sleepers, those at risk of rough sleeping, and single homeless people approaching the Council for help.
In tandem with this work, the Council will also provide a personal support service for people with medium and high needs, after successfully bidding for funding from the Government’s Rough Sleeper Accommodation Programme.
The renovations support the Council’s ongoing commitment to ensure all rough sleepers are offered suitable temporary accommodation and support. The hostels will be managed by the Smarts group, and will be run by the Council.
The housing crisis in Hackney is having a direct impact on levels of homelssness. Hackney has the largest temporary accommodation hostel stock in London but it is inadequate to meet the numbers who need our help. Although demand far outstrips supply, these new modern units will help provide much-needed modern, temporary accommodation for some of the borough’s most vulnerable people.
Mayor of Hackney Philip Glanville added: “We are doing everything in our power to try to solve the housing crisis locally, including building hundreds of new homes this year at dozens of sites across the borough with more than half for social rent, shared ownership or Hackney living rent. The housing crisis has led to a significant increase in people presenting to the Council as homeless. In the past, the Council has concentrated on providing family hostel accommodation but these new plans, as part of our wider Covid response for former rough sleepers, will now see us help find solutions for single people, some with complex needs, who are without a home.”