July 2016 - Closure of Mahora House
It is with great sadness that Dwell Housing Trust has closed Mahora House in Kilbirnie.
Mahora House, a large home that over the last 30 years had provided much needed affordable housing and other services to people who experience mental illness and people in need, bid its last tenant farewell on 28 June.
It originally belonged to Mahora House Inc, the organisation that merged with Wellington Housing Trust to form Dwell Housing Trust in 2013. It was Dwell's largest home and could house up to 11 people at a time.
The decision to close, which was made in February this year, was a difficult one for Dwell. Investigations into the home had been ongoing for several years and we had consulted with numerous experts and agencies when considering its future. However the trust could not ignore the fact that the 100 year old building was no longer able to meet the standard of quality that we demand of all our homes; there were serious leaks in the roof and major structural issues. It was simply not providing a safe, secure home for the people who lived there.
As always, the wellbeing of our tenants was our top priority and so the decision was made to close the property before they had to spend another winter there. The trust had discussed the issues with the house with the tenants for some time. We also consulted the numerous agencies and health professionals that work alongside the tenants regarding the closure and timing of this.
Dwell then worked closely with these agencies to rehouse the tenants and ensured that they received the support they needed to move successfully into their new homes. We are very pleased that they have been successfully rehoused in the local community and that the majority of them remain as Dwell tenants.
The closure of Mahora House, however, is not the end of the story. Dwell has long realised that site was not being used to its full potential; it is a large piece of flat land in a fantastic location close to many facilities. Consequently we will retain the site, demolish the current house and build high quality, warm, healthy, affordable homes where people flourish. The site will continue to provide homes to people in need.
Mahora House closed in July 2016 and the then tenants were found other homes in the area and for most Dwell remained their landlord.
The closure of Mahora House is not the end of the story. Dwell has long realised that the site was not being used to its full potential; it is a large piece of flat land in a fantastic location close to many facilities. The house was demolished in August 2016 to make way for more quality, warm, healthy, affordable homes for people in need.
Dwell has contracted architectural firm Novak + Middleton to design the new homes. The homes are designed to provide high levels of natural light, use indoor space well and provide functional outdoor space, all of which will contribute to the wellbeing of our tenants.