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GLASGOW. In 1866 Glasgow obtained special powers to deal with large, crowded and unhealthy areas by pulling down insanitary property and erecting dwellings for the poorer working classes. At first it cleared away slums, but did not itself build. În 1889 a change of policy took place, and municipal housing was undertaken. The following gives the size and number of dwellings erected and completed to October, 1905 One apartment houses...
257 Houses above three apartments
1,965 Much of the land upon which these tenements stand cost from £1 ios. to £6 ios. per square yard. Of the whole number of these houses there are 483 distinctively suitable for the poorest classes, with single-apartment houses at an average rent of £ 5 and twoapartment houses at an average rent of about £8 55. Applicants whose wages do not exceed 26s. have preference for the doubleroomed, and those whose earnings do not exceed 225. for the singleroomed houses. The houses have many useful fittings, are under good regulations, and are kept sweet and clean, and let well. Some of the two-roomed houses consist of a kitchen 15 feet by 13 feet (with a bed recess 4 feet 4 inches by 6 feet) and a sitting room of about the same size. Each bed recess is fitted with a wire spring mattress. In the single-roomed dwellings the bed recess is shut off by a partition. Every house has a water-closet, and there is a washhouse to each block of tenements. These municipal dwellings are a charge on the rates for five or six years after erection ; after that, by the accumulation of the sinking fund, revenue begins to cover all expenditure, including 45 per cent. required for interest and sinking fund.
Municipal enterprise in Glasgow seems to have succeeded best of all with common lodging houses. In all seven lodging houses have been erected, containing 2,430 beds let at nightly charges of 3d., 31d., 4d. and 41d. per individual. In the year 1905, 829,285 lodgers were accommodated, of whom 76,900 were women. Allowing for depreciation, the net profit was about £2,952. The Glasgow municipal model lodging houses yielded an average net profit last year of 31 per cent. on a total capital cost for land, buildings and furniture of £109,342. There has been written off this sum £22,152 as a depreciation allowance, by which the return is raised to 45 per cent. on the reduced capital.
The great majority who use these municipal lodging houses are permanent lodgers. There is one house for women only. To each house is attached a shop, a commodious common dining room and an airy recreation room.
The latest and in many respects the most interesting addition to the Glasgow lodging houses is that called "The Family Home." It is intended for the accommodation of widows and widowers left with three .or four children. Each of the 140 rooms is isolated, plainly furnished, heated by water, and lighted by electricity. Cleaning is thus reduced to a minimum. The children can be taken charge of during the day and fed for the sum of is. 6d. per head per week. All children old enough are sent to school. Besides a crèche, there is a general recreation room and a common cooking and dining room. It is not intended to be a charitable institution, and a charge of about 8d. per night is made for a sleeping room large enough for an adult person and not more than three children. The scheme has not yet paid its way. In 1905 the revenue was £2,748 against an expenditure of £ 3,105. A corporation report of 18th December, 1905, states that the inmates number 89 adults and 171 children of the class for whom the home was intended.
The balance sheet to the last-named date shows liabilities of £1,259,251 and assets exceeding this amount by £30,196.
GREENOCK. The Corporation of Greenock made an improvement scheme under the Artizans' Dwellings Acts. In 1886 blocks of houses in flats with shops on ground floor were erected on the improved area. The houses consist of single, two and three apartments respectively, and there are more applicants than can be accommodated. The rents are ios. per month for single apartments, 175. for two, and 22s. per month for three apartments. The total cost of the scheme was about £200,000, of which £72,500 was expended on new buildings.
HORNSEY. Hornsey adopted the Act in 1896, when 4 acres of land were purchased, the cost working out at £600 per acre.
Two classes of houses (all self-contained) were built, there being 68 class A, which are let at 8s. 6d. per week, and contain sitting room, living room, scullery, and three bedrooms; and 40 class B, which contain sitting room, kitchen, scullery, and two bedrooms, let at 6s. 6d. per week. The houses form two roads 45 feet wide, which have been planted with trees. There are forecourts of from 10 to 15 feet in depth, with gardens in the rear ranging from 45 to 60 feet long. The total cost of the scheme, including the erection of the cottages, construction of roads and sewers, amounted to £ 31,000. The term of loan is 40 years, and the scheme is estimated to be selfsupporting, allowing for a margin of 12 per cent. on the rental value for empties and repairs after repayment of capital and interest on loans, rates, taxes, etc.
Owing to the great need for similar provision in the Highgate district, two acres of land were acquired at a cost of £ 1,000 per acre. Forty-eight cottages were erected : 12 class A and 24 class B, same as the Hornsey houses, 12 double tenements, each containing living room, bedroom, scullery, w.c., and independent entrances from the front and back of the cottages. The rents are for class A gs. per week ; class B 7s. 6d. ; and for the tenements 6s. There are forecourts 15 feet in depth, and gardens ranging from 50 to 60 feet. The total cost of the scheme was £16,700. Owing to greater cost of land and additional price for materials and labor, the margin left for empties and repairs will be about eight per cent.
A further scheme has been carried out at a charge of about £ 44,000, including land, buildings, roads, sewers, etc. One hundred and forty houses have been erected : 26 of class A, containing sitting room, living room, scullery, and four bedrooms, let at iis. 3d. per week ; 40 of class B, the same as class A, with three bedrooms, let at 9s. 6d. per week; 38 of class C, with two bedrooms, let at 8s. per week ; and 36 of Class D, let at 6s. 6d. per week, and containing living room, small scullery, bath room, and two bedrooms.
HUDDERSFIELD. The Huddersfield Town Council has the distinction of being the first local authority to set up a common lodging house. This it did in 1853, at a cost of £5,000, enlarged in 1878 by another £1,500. It accommodates about 200 persons nightly, in four classes, viz., married couples, single men, single women, and a “mechanics' home." It just about pays its way.
The artizans' dwellings erected by the corporation in 1880-82 comprise 160 houses on leased land at a cost of £28,944, including street improvements. The rents range from 35. 4d. to 6s. weekly.
KINGSTON-ON-THAMES. The corporation has built 12 good cottages, which let readily at 9s. and 1os. a week. The rent includes electric light. The work. manship is good, and each cottage has a yard and small garden.
LEICESTER. Two blocks of buildings, containing 42 tenements, have been erected by the town council, and cost £7,989.
LIVERPOOL. The corporation, after having built six tenement blocks in 1869 out of “Funds of Capital Personal Estate," and similar block dwellings in 1885 and 1890 under the Act of 1875, and finding themselves unsuccessful in their endeavors to provide accommodation for the poorest of the citizens, determined upon a new policy. With the help of the city engineer and building surveyor new designs were made and experimental dwellings were erected by directly employed workmen under the supervision of the building surveyor. The aim was to provide tenements of two and three rooms to let at rentals of about one shilling per room. The first group of new dwellings was erected in 1898 under Part III. of the Act of 1890. The living rooms average 15 ft. by 10 ft., and the bedrooms i ft. by 10 ft
. Each dwelling is supplied with water and gas, and contains separate
W.C. With modifications this design has served as the model for most of the Liverpool municipal dwellings since 1898. The number of dwellings erected down to the end of 1905 is as follows :Tenements of one room
184 two rooms
887 three rooms
600 four rooms
1,818 The valuation of land for housing purposes (usually put down at about one half the actual cost) and cost of buildings stand at
356,705 125. 4d., and the gross annual rental at £17,799 12. 8d. The net receipts from the property in 1905 were £7,312 ios. 9d., a little over two per cent. on the capital value. The schemes therefore show a small financial deficit, the return being insufficient to cover interest and sinking fund.
The first of the later series of tenements were built directly by the corporation. These cost £ 54 per room to build. The tenements built by contract have cost considerably more, but it is only fair to say that the designs have contained improvements which made them more expensive.
In 1903 a block of twelve dwellings was erected in Eldon Street, built of crushed clinker (from the corporation refuse destructor) and Portland cement, moulded into slabs, each slab forming a complete side or roof of a room, openings for doors and windows as well as fireplaces and flues being formed in the moulding. The rooms are 10 ft
. high, the living rooms 15 ft. by 10 ft. 4 in., and bedrooms 15 ft. 3 in. by 7 ft. 9 in. The cost of the buildings apart from land was £ 4,072, the land being put down at 12s. per yard. The cost greatly exceeded the estimate owing to the powerful hoisting appliances required for lifting the heavy slabs into position. The city engineer, who designed the buildings, considers that if a large number of dwellings were erected on this plan so as to spread the cost of the hoisting apparatus over a greater area of building, these concrete houses would be cheaper than those built of bricks and mortar. The rents charged for the three-room tenements in Eldon Street range from 4s. 6d. on the ground floor to 35. 9d. per week on the second floor.
The Upper Mann Street Dwellings, opened December, 1905, have been built with a flat roof, with shelters at either end, to be used as a play-ground for the tenants' children or as a drying-ground for the use of the housewives on washing-day.
MANCHESTER. The policy of the corporation has been to treat housing as part of a great work of sanitary amelioration. In 1889 it was decided to apply the provisions of the Artizans' and Laborers' Dwellings Improvement Acts to certain unhealthy areas of the city, and the passing of the Housing of the Working Classes Act, 1890, facilitated the work in this direction. An improvement scheme for the Oldham Road and Pollard Street areas was adopted. The cost of purchase and clearance amounted to £97,481 for an area of 18,629 square yards in the Oldham Road district, and £9,546 for the Pollard Street area of 5,474 square yards. The buildings cost respectively £60,577 and £26,220, and were completed and ready for occupation in 1894.
In 1891 the corporation acquired certain condemned property in the Ancoats district, known as the Harrison Street area, at a cost of £5,147 for 3,442 square yards. A lodging house was erected thereon costing £23,564, and is fully occupied. An area of 5,671 square yards in Chester Street was also acquired at a cost of £ 15,141, and 5,819 square yards, known as the Pott Street area, at a cost of £ 14,621. Dwellings were erected on the cleared sites at a cost of
14,598 and £17,942 respectively. One hundred and twenty-two dwellings have also been erected at Miles Platting at a cost of £30,000, in fulfilment of statutory obligations in connection with various street improvements.
In 1901 the Blackley Estate was purchased, comprising about 243 acres, at a cost of € 36,646, for the purpose of housing persons displaced by certain street improvements. Two hundred and three houses of various classes, at a total cost of £62,737 3s., are in course of erection.
In Rochdale Road 64 tenements have just been completed, and are rapidly being let at rents varying from 4s. 6d. to 5s. 6d. per week.
The sanitary committee, at the close of the year 1903 and beginning of 1904, arranged for the acquisition of three additional areas in Bradford Road, Wesley Street, and Queen's Road, on which it is proposed to build working class dwellings.
RICHMOND, SURREY. In 1894 this corporation borrowed £13,380 at three per centi, repayable in 40 years, for the purpose of building on three acres of land previously purchased by the town at £700 per acre. Sixty-two dwellings, cottages and flats cost £12,700, and the investment has resulted in a material saving to the rates. The total outlay on this first scheme was about £15,750. The rents are as follows :-With six rooms, a scullery and a bay window, ten at 8s. and twelve at 75. 6d. per week; twenty-eight cottages, having four good rooms and a scullery, 6s. per week ; six flats, with three rooms and a scullery, 55. 6d. per week ; and six other flats, having two rooms and a scullery, 4s. 6d. per week. These municipal cottages are cheaper than those provided by private enterprise, and the corporation is so well satisfied with its experiment that it has erected seventy more dwellings at a cost, including site and contingencies, of about £22,000. There are forty cottages with six rooms, scullery and a bay window at 78. 9d. per week ; sixteen cottages with five rooms and a scullery at 7s. 3d. ; and fourteen with four rooms, scullery and porch at 6s. 3d.