More social housing needed says MP

Monday February 12th 2024

Midlothian MP has called for more social housing

Written by Midlothian View Reporter, Luke Jackson

Midlothian MP has called for more social housing as he visited a new multi-million pound community development. Owen Thompson welcomed the new Taylor Wimpey project – Sinclair Gardens – in the village of Roslin.

He praised Sinclair Gardens for its design and focus on creating a community that harmonises with the surrounding natural beauty.

But he said the local, Scottish and UK Governments had to work together to bring more affording housing to the people of Midlothian.

He said: “I know from my work as an MP that housing is a massive issue here in Midlothian and indeed across Scotland.

“Creating more social housing in Scotland requires a multifaceted approach, combining political will, financial investment, innovative construction methods and community engagement.

“Addressing the growing demand for affordable housing is crucial for economic stability, social equality and the well-being of our communities.

“Increased subsidies for housing associations and local authorities would enable them to build more homes. Grants and low-interest loans could also encourage private developers to contribute to the social housing stock.

“Identifying and repurposing underused or vacant public land for social housing can reduce costs associated with land acquisition, one of the significant barriers to building new homes.

“This strategy can fast-track the development process and make projects more financially viable.

“Social impact bonds and housing investment trusts could also provide new sources of capital, spreading the financial risk and leveraging private sector efficiency.

“We need to think outside the box. This new development at Sinclair Gardens is a pivotal moment for Roslin and the wider Midlothian area.

“It shows this is a highly desirable area with a lot to offer. It’s about fostering a community that lives in balance with nature while providing the amenities and lifestyle modern families seek.

“But we have to make sure we are catering for every part of the housing market not just those with higher incomes.”

The new development includes 304 high-quality homes, offering a mix of two, three, four and five bedroom houses.

Developers hope that with its proximity to the Pentland Hills Regional Park, Sinclair Gardens will be a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, offering residents direct access to green spaces and scenic trails.

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