Getting a unit in the new public housing development in Towradgi was ‘‘a blessing’’ for Nuala Moriarty.
After her husband Charles died, 71-year-old Mrs Moriarty moved in with a daughter and helped with the cooking and child-minding.
That arrangement lasted for a while but she eventually had to move out.
With her name still on a community public housing list, Mrs Moriarty moved into a place in Sydney.
‘‘I had signed a lease for six months to rent something in Caringbah,’’ she said.
‘‘So when this unit came up the lease in Caringbah was finishing the very next week. It was a blessing.’’
Mrs Moriarty is one of a number of new tenants who have moved into the public housing units in Sturdee Street, Towradgi, which had their official opening yesterday.
Mrs Moriarty came to Wollongong because she has a son and daughter who live here, and another daughter in Engadine.
‘‘My husband passed away three years ago,’’ she said.
‘‘I hadn’t lived on my own for 50 years. I didn’t want to be away from my kids.’’
The units have had a brief but chequered history. Building company Perle Constructions was in charge of the development until they went into voluntary administration in January last year.
The work was then taken over by St Hilliers, who themselves went into voluntary administration in May this year.
Building the Sturdee Street units - and a 13-unit property in Henry Street, Tarrawanna - then came under the control of NSW Public Works.
The units were finished in early August and the first tenants moved in on August 17.
Cunningham MP Sharon Bird, who was at yesterday’s opening, said she was happy to see the units finished.
‘‘It is a joyous day today and I know it’s been a long and more difficult task to get there than many people would notice,’’ Ms Bird said.