Call for innovative thinking at Midlothian Council

Midlothian Council's housing in Mayfield
Midlothian Council's housing in Mayfield

Councillors have called on officers to think outside of the box in an attempt to provide more affordable council homes for Midlothian.

Last week’s Performance Review and Scrutiny Committee was given a paper on phases one and two of the council’s house building programme, which revealed 864 additional council homes were provided over a seven year period, costing £108.7 million.

Phase two will deliver 400 homes in the next five years at a cost of £63.7 million, 44 per cent of those will be one bedroom properties.

This was put down to recent welfare changes including the bedroom tax.

Councillor Derek Milligan (Lab) worked it out at £155,000 per new home, although officers pointed out that the total figure includes land costs.

He said: “I’m still finding it hard to understand. We would be cheaper just going out and buying a flat from an estate agent.

“Have we been looking at any other ways that we can develop more housing?”

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