Page last updated at 18:35 GMT, Monday, 23 February 2009

City to build new council houses

Leeds City Council is to begin building new council houses for the first time in 20 years.

The authority is seeking tenders to build about 80 properties across three sites and said 27 of those would be council homes.

They will be six two-bedroom homes each in Armley and Wortley and 15 three-bedroom homes adjacent to Waterloo Primary School in Pudsey.

The authority has not built new council homes since 1989.

We will not see a return to the vast council estates of the past
Councillor Les Carter

It said there were 96,000 council homes in Leeds in 1980, but that had shrunk to 57,000 because of homes being purchased by tenants or being demolished when they became unsustainable.

The council said it hoped to continue building council homes in the future.

Councillor Les Carter, the council's executive board member for housing, said: "This is an important step for Leeds and a great sign of our commitment to providing decent homes.

"We have built plenty of sheltered housing since the 1980s but these are the first bread and butter council homes for 20 years.

"It is, however, vital to remember that building council housing is part of the solution, not the solution itself. We will not see a return to the vast council estates of the past, instead we aim to create sustainable communities based around a variety of different housing types and tenures."

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