banner image

New blueprint for the future of housing in Port Stephens

3 April 2024

Council has endorsed the exhibition of a new Draft Local Housing Strategy designed to set the vision for future housing growth across Port Stephens.

Port Stephens is growing with the NSW Government predicting another 20,000 residents over the next 20 years.

Deputy Mayor Leah Anderson says the NSW Government forecasts have driven this important review of housing across Port Stephens.

”Limited opportunity for new housing developments, housing prices and low rental vacancies have begun to push middle income families out of the market. This impacts local businesses that struggle to attract workers, particularly in the aged care, hospitality and health sectors,” Deputy Mayor Anderson said.

“We also know that the impacts of housing prices and low rental vacancies are forcing more people to either relocate or choose housing options that are not ideal – the number of people sleeping on our streets, couch surfing, or seeking social housing is rising dramatically.

“We need to find ways to support those most vulnerable while at the same, ensuring our economy remains strong and stable,” she added.

Late last year Council hosted the Port Stephens Housing Forum which included more than 50 representatives from the community, business and industry to share ideas and seek solutions to the housing crisis. The information gathered has been used to guide the development of the draft Port Stephens Local Housing Strategy.

“The Port Stephens Local Housing Strategy focuses on three main areas - housing diversity, housing affordability and housing supply,” Deputy Mayor Anderson said.

“The Strategy emphasises a mix of housing types and increased density near our town centres.

“We know that living close to health services, medical care, education and childcare and having access to public transport, walking and cycling paths are important priorities for our community.

“We also know that a mix of housing types will help more people across our communities live close to family, friends, and networks through all stages of their life,” she added.

The draft Port Stephens Local Housing Strategy also outlines the additional services required to meet increased population growth.

“Council is very aware that to accommodate extra residents, we need extra infrastructure – our roads, health services, schools and public spaces all need to grow to meet future demand,” Deputy Mayor Anderson said

“This document will not only help Council plan for this change but also, seek funding from both State and Federal Governments to deliver what's needed.

“Council needs to seek solutions to how we can provide greater housing diversity to meet the needs of our community, including encouraging developers to invest in a mix of housing options.

We encourage our community to take the time to have their say and tell us what they think of this plan for the future,” she added.

The draft Port Stephens Local Housing Strategy is on public exhibition for community feedback until Monday 29 April 2024. Find out more and have your say by visiting pscouncil.info/housing-strategy