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Tuesday, 27 November 1973
Page: 2110

Senator DAVIDSON - My question is directed to the Minister representing the Minister for Housing and Minister for Works. I refer to the announcement of plans for a scheme to provide cheap, mass-produced houses. Can the Minister advise whether the scheme provides for a suitable variation in style and design of the houses? Does the Minister know whether there has been consultation with the Department of the Environment and Conservation and also the Department of Urban and Regional Development? If not, will he press for such consultations and ensure that cheaper mass-produced houses will not become soulless areas or degenerate into slums?

Senator CAVANAGH - The question of factory produced houses, which I think would be a more appropriate term- I do not know on what scale they are to be produced- at a cheaper cost is now under study. I do not think there has been any final decision. There has been no final Government decision to go ahead with this proposal. There has been some criticism of the idea. I agree that if the scheme is to become a reality it must provide for the individuality of people who take some pride in their homes. They must not become soulless homes and lose all their character. I think the Minister for Housing is well aware of the position and that he will foresee these problems. What may evolve out of the matter is that many components for houses may be constructed in factories in situ. But there has been no finality on the whole matter.

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