Housing Minister Kevin Stewart was in Barra today (Friday) to cut the turf for six new homes at Corran Ciosmul, Castlebay.
The new homes, of four two-bedroom houses in a terrace build and two homes (semi-detached) with one bedroom each, will be built by Calmax Construction Limited who will be employing a number of local subcontractors.
Minister for Local Government & Housing Kevin Stewart said: “I am delighted that the Scottish Government’s affordable housing supply programme was able to support this project with a grant of over £800,000.
“This will support the delivery of these affordable, high quality homes and will help address the demand for social rented housing on Barra.
“Our £30 million Rural and Islands Housing Fund complements existing investment in affordable housing through our mainstream programme and is open to a wide range of applicants including community bodies and rural landowners.
Two homes have already completed in Scalpay using the Islands Fund, importantly helping retain two families in their local community.
“We are committed to delivering at least 50,000 affordable homes over this Parliament, and ensuring they meet the needs of people and communities across Scotland – backed by £3 billion of investment.
“Working together with housing associations and councils, we are on target to reach that ambition.”
HHP’s Chairman, Norman M Macleod said: “A total of £1.4 million will be invested in constructing the homes with funding from the Scottish Government, Comhairle Nan Eilean Siar and HHP.
“It is great to finally see this development in Barra underway.
“As well as providing new homes for those on our waiting lists it will help the local economy by giving local contractors the opportunity to work with the main contractor.
“The homes should be ready to move into by February 2019. This will be the first social rented properties built in Barra since March 2010.”
Councillor Kenny John Macleod, the Chair of the Comhairle’s Communities and Housing Committee said: “It’s really good news that work has started on these new houses.
“The Comhairle has worked very closely with HHP and the Scottish Government to set out the affordable housing programme for the islands.
“We are all committed to seeing new homes being built throughout the islands, so it’s very pleasing to see six new homes will soon be available in Castlebay.”