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Minister Celebrates Progress of First-Time Buyer Housing at Johnny Watterson’s Lane in Douglas 10 August 2007

The Minister for Local Government and the Environment, Hon. John Shimmin, MHK, today visited the site at Johnny Watterson’s Lane in Douglas where some 116 First-Time Buyer homes, along with 11 open market properties, are being developed by Dandara Contracting Limited on land previously owned by the Department.

The first phase of some 21 First-Time Buyer houses and apartments is now complete and purchasers are moving into their new homes.

After viewing the show apartment on the site, walking around the area of the completed properties and planting a tree to celebrate the occasion, the Minister said,

“I am very impressed with the design and quality of the new homes that I have seen today. They not only meet the Department’s standards for First-Time Buyer housing but also the external designs are quite different from those we generally see elsewhere on our Island. I wish the purchasers much happiness in their new homes which are in an excellent location with very impressive views to the West, over the beautiful hills and countryside.” The Design concept for the development and the individual houses was prepared by Ellis Brown Architects on behalf of the Department and these have formed the basis of the scheme detailed and constructed to a high standard by Dandara.

Work commenced on the site a year ago and is due for completion towards the end of 2008. The First-Time Buyer homes include a few two-bedroomed apartments but mainly comprise much sought after, two and three-bedroomed houses. They have been sold with Government support, under the House Purchase Assistance Scheme, at prices ranging from £125,000 to £143,000.

Director of Estates and Housing, Richard Senior, who attended the official opening with the Minister, said,

“There is a high level of demand for affordable housing in Douglas and the East of the Island and we could easily have allocated three times the number of homes available. The First-Time Buyer Register continues to grow with over 760 applicants currently seeking affordable homes. The Department is therefore firmly committed to developing further sites in its ownership in Douglas, Braddan, Onchan, Foxdale and Ballasalla subject to receiving planning approval”.

The new Estate will be known as Reayrt y Sheear (West View).

Other people in attendance at the event included residents who had recently moved into their new homes, local Tynwald Members and other invited guests.

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