Refurbished community flats get the thumbs up

A newly renovated flat in Kainga Ora’s Maitland St community housing was just the ticket for...
A newly renovated flat in Kainga Ora’s Maitland St community housing was just the ticket for downsizing couple Joan and Joe Ratana. PHOTO: PETER MCINTOSH.
Residents of two Maitland St community housing blocks are all set for a cosy winter after the recent top to bottom refurbishment of the flats within.

The blocks of flats at 68 and 70 Maitland St, in Dunedin, have filled up with residents since the completion of the work.

For Joan and Joe Ratana, who moved into their new home in April, the newly refurbished flat was a warm, safe and dry option after the couple decided to downsize from a larger family home.

Mrs Ratana said the new home had been amazing for them, and the couple took advantage of its proximity to St Clair for walks.

‘‘It’s beautiful, beautiful, very, very nice. Very warm, double-glazed, really lovely.’’

They had already hosted a granddaughter visiting from Melbourne and friends from Brisbane, and received compliments about both the quality of the house and the great view of Otago Harbour.

Kainga Ora regional director for South Canterbury, Otago and Southland Kerrie Young said the organisation’s housing stock in Dunedin was ageing, and it was going through its entire housing portfolio to see where improvements could be made.

The Maitland St units were a type of housing called star blocks, which had been built in the 1960s and 1970s.

‘‘Each of them, they’re quite an efficient design, which is why we’ve gone and renovated them rather than knock them down and start again.’’

The wiring and electrical systems had been checked throughout, double-glazed windows and insulation installed in every apartment, a new fire system put in to the building, kitchens and bathrooms refreshed and coats of paint added all around.

Now that the Maitland St blocks were complete, Kainga Ora’s focus would move on to the next project in the city.

‘‘We’re doing our best to identify all opportunities to provide more warm, safe, dry homes in Dunedin and increase the stock we have here in Dunedin so that we can help people that are on the housing register.’’

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