Labour’s Kiwibuild is just like greek yogurt and sea salt – for the children of the middle classes
The government’s announcement today of a major regeneration project for East Porirua has all the hallmarks of Auckland’s Tamaki tragedy whereby low-income residents and families are being displaced from Glen Innes, Point England and Panmure as these suburbs are gentrified for the middle class.
The previous Labour government, which began the Tamaki transformation, made almost identical promises to Tamaki in 2008 that they are making to East Porirua today.
The winners in Tamaki have been property developers and the middle class. Nothing we can see indicates anything different for East Porirua.
The announcement of a mere 150 extra state houses “added to the public housing stock elsewhere in Porirua” appears to be an attempt at a reassuring sop to the locals.
The housing crisis across New Zealand is sharpest for low-income tenants and families and yet the focus of this development is the use of large swathes of state housing land to build Kiwibuild homes for the children of the middle class.
With 41,000 tenants and families across New Zealand facing severe housing need the Labour government approach is to support the middle class and to side-line those struggling with impossible private sector rents.
Yesterday’s announcement is a bad omen for the existing tenants and families in East Porirua.