20_006_footscray-lions-cooperative-village_councillors_210907_draft-4_page_01The United Housing Co-operative (UHC) has secured a $15,300,000.00 State Labor Government grant under the Big Housing Build’s Social Housing Growth Fund to re-develop the Footscray Lions Senior Citizens Village in West Footscray.    Homes Victoria is investing $739 million with 22 Community Housing Agencies contributing a combined $271 million towards these developments, will deliver at least 2,300 new homes across 38 metropolitan and regional Local Government Areas and, importantly, as our state emerges from the coronavirus pandemic, these projects will create a minimum of 9,000 jobs

UHC has partnered with the Lions Club of Footscray (LCF) and drawn together an inspired project team to finalise design for 49 one and two bedroom apartments to be built over two and three storeys to become the Footscray Lions Co-operative Village for predominately women over the age of 55 years in high need for secure housing.  UHC will manage the site for over 20 years which will be jointly owned by UHC and LCF.

The development will have a strong focus on sustainability, adaptability, ageing in place and place making.  The design will build on the legacy of the existing Lions Village, congregated around a central court yard with a community facility and UHC’s co-operative housing model.  The new development will include a community facility, community garden, orchard and solar power.  Current residents will be re-located and then invited back to the re-developed Village upon completion and will join with another approximately 50 older women and carers to tenant the Village.

UHC brings years of experience in managing community housing in the Maribyrnong municipality under a co-operative model, and we firmly believe the co-operative model has many benefits for residents and the broader community.     We are also open to expanding the tenant cohort in the future to include the concept of intergenerational housing where women may like to share with younger family members or carer, this is a popular model in Europe. All in all, we believe this development will be a model for future low income housing for older renters for the municipality and for the broader nation.

Works are to commence by December 2021 in line with the Fund’s criteria with an expected completion date of March 2023.


City of Maribyrnong Mayor, Cr Michael Clarke, said it is great to see State Government investment in the area to support community housing for those who need it most.

“We want to ensure that everyone in our great City of Maribyrnong has access to housing. This development will provide an opportunity for low-income residents to access good quality, secure and affordable housing in a co-operative village model, which could be replicated in other parts of the municipality,” Cr Clarke said

UHC congratulates the State Government on this great initiative in building diverse and resilient communities, by investing in good quality social housing that will provide affordable and sustainable housing for many low income people for many years into the future.  UHC also wishes to acknowledge and congratulate the Lions Club of Footscray for supporting older women over many years through the provision of secure, affordable housing and for joining with UHC in this development as neither party could have achieved this without the other. And of course acknowledges the Wujundjeri people on whose traditional lands the property will be built.

More information visit: https://www.vic.gov.au/social-housing-growth-fund

United Housing Co-operative Ltd.

Updated 20/09/2021