Aberdeen agrees £159m housing budget and five-year schools estate investment

Aberdeen agrees £159m housing budget and five-year schools estate investment

Aberdeen City Council yesterday mapped out its plan for creating green, affordable homes as part of its Housing Revenue Account (HRA) budget and also to invest more than £200m over the next five years growing and renewing the schools estate.

The bulk of the £159 million HRA capital budget for 2023/24 was allocated to new builds, with the rest allocated to enhancing the existing stock of more than 22,000 properties.

This includes:

  • £18m replacing windows and upgrading flat roofs;
  • £15m modernising kitchens and bathrooms;
  • Approximately £15m on energy efficiency measures like installing solid wall insultation and new heating systems; and
  • £1m on disabled adaptions, part of our support for the Local Outcome Improvement Plan.
  • The council also agreed to spend £7m on safety and security such as rewiring, lift replacements, and installing new door systems, having almost completed a roll out of integrated fire and smoke alarms across all properties.

A further £2m is to be used to expand the district heating networks, giving more tenants access to low-cost heat and power.

The housing revenue budget for 2023/24 is £102m. Rent is to rise by 4% increase to help cover the increasing cost of repairing, maintaining and managing properties.

Councillor Miranda Radley, convener of the Communities, Housing and Public Protection Committee, said: “We believe that tenants would wish to see us provide homes that are economical to run and environmentally friendly, and offer the same advantages as new-builds.

“Through our engagement with tenants, including community walkabouts, we have sensed the strong desire for quality, affordable homes and inclusive neighbourhoods – and in turn where our priorities should lie as a corporate landlord.”

The council is currently completing the refurbishment of approximately 500 “voids” using a Scottish Government grant to provide homes for people displaced by the Ukraine war.

In education, the capital spend over the next five years includes:

  • £91.5m for a new secondary school for Hazlehead and Countesswells;
  • £13.2m to extend Bucksburn Academy;
  • £27.5m for first of two new primaries in the Bucksburn/Newhills area;
  • £27.5m for the first of two new primaries in Grandhome.

The budget also includes a funding commitment of £19.4m for the Hydrogen Hub, a joint venture with bp to produce renewable energy. And this year the council introduced its first annual carbon budget to help measure the success of environmental policies.

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