New temporary village planned

Posted 20 Mar 2012 by MediaStuff Popular
This item was posted on the Stuff.co.nz website - click here to view the original

 

Den and Jan Stephensen
STACY SQUIRES/Fairfax NZ

COMFORTABLE SHELTER: Linwood Park accommodation village residents Den and Jan Stephensen are thankful for their makeshift home while they look for a new one.

 

Another temporary accommodation village is planned for people whose houses need quake repairs, Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee says.

Twenty two-bedroom units were ready to be built and would take tenants in 12 weeks in a village similar to those at Linwood Park and the Kaiapoi Domain, he said.

The site had not been finalised and he would not say how much it would cost, except that it was "significant".

Fifty portable one and two-bedroom units were ready if needed, as well as 78 units, with up to three bedrooms, on standby with a supplier.

Den and Jan Stephensen moved into the Linwood Park temporary accommodation village almost six months ago after living in a motel since February 2011 and were thankful for the Government's help.

Their South New Brighton home was badly damaged in the February 2011 quake and their insurance company paid for their accommodation until they moved into the temporary village.

The unit tenancy ran for four months, with the ability to reapply, Den Stephensen said.

They were living in a two-bedroom unit that was well made and they were comfortable while they searched for a replacement house to move into, he said.

It was difficult to find a home to buy that met their budget and did not have quake-related problems, but he was confident they would find one in the end.

"You've got to be really careful because of earthquake damage and the area that you will be living in," he said.

"Beggars can't be choosers. We'll have to get a place at some stage, but we're very careful.

"There are houses out there, but you've got to be damn careful you don't buy into someone else's problems, which is very easy to do."

The turnover in the village was quite high, which was to be expected, and removal vans were common visitors to the village, he said.

"The Government have been damn good with this accommodation. Some countries, they just give you tents, but here they turn it on for the people when they're in need," he said. "We're happy to be here. We've got a roof over our heads and that's the main thing."

The village at Linwood Park, with 41 temporary units, opened in August. The Kaiapoi Domain has 22 units.

A spokesman for Brownlee said 64 families had used the temporary villages since they opened. Two four-bedroom units were available in Kaiapoi, but Linwood was full.

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