54 new affordable and contemporary homes in Melbourne West 

Today we proudly launched a new social housing development in Footscraywith funding support from the Victorian State Government’s Victorian Property Fund  

Unison transformed an aged and dilapidated block of 17 small units into 54 brand new self-contained apartments.  

“Unison believes every person should have a quality, affordable home and belong to a thriving community” says James King, Director of Property Development and currently Acting CEO at Unison. “We are really proud of this development and the high standard it sets for social housing in Victoria.” 



The new development was designed with a focus on residents’ well-being and quality of life, with great natural light and airflow, friendly large communal area and outdoor garden, high-standard energy efficiency, accessible facilities, and enhanced safety measures. 

Features include 

  • Rooftop solar to lower utility costs and environmental footprint   
  • Rainwater harvesting system for toilet flushing and irrigation
  • Embedded network   
  • High-performance glazing and energy efficient building services 
  • Secured bike storage facility  

People living in rooming houses managed by Unison, and people who lived in the property prior to the redevelopment, will have the opportunity to move into a brand-new apartment that provides more privacy and amenity, as well as more safety and security.   

Australia’s first Professor of Urban Housing and Homelessness and Chair of the Unison Housing Research Lab at RMIT University, Prof. Guy Johnson, said he was ‘’pleased to see a move away from rooming houses.” He added “the evidence is clear: self-contained housing is more effective in sustaining tenancy. Our research also shows that providing the housing is only part of the response to homelessness. Helping people settle in and make that housing into a home is equally important.” 

For that reason, the building comprises a Place Management office to facilitate timely and personalised support, which will further assist in sustaining tenancies. In addition, McAuley Women’s Community Support Services will be co-located on site for part of the week to strengthen support for women they have referred to the development. 

The Victoria Property Fund supports Registered Housing Agencies to carry out development projects to increase the supply of long-term affordable housing for low income and disadvantaged Victorians.


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