The facility will enable Arbour Housing to access housing development grants from the Department for Communities, combining public and private funding to create a total investment in new homes of some £40m.

Formed in 1978, Arbour Housing owns and manages over 1,200 homes throughout Northern Ireland, with larger concentrations of stock in Portadown, Lurgan and Newry.

The flagship project in its new development strategy will see 98 new social houses being created at a site on Buncrana Road in Derry-Londonderry, helping to meet high demand for new housing in the area.

The Northern Ireland Housing Executive waiting list indicates there are over 2,000 applicants for housing in the Westbank area of Derry, in which the Buncrana Road scheme is located.

Projects supported by the new £20 million Danske facility will help to create up to 190 construction jobs and support more than 290 associated jobs in the wider economy over the next four years. The new homes will be built to high energy efficiency and sustainability standards.

Kieran Matthews, Chief Executive at Arbour Housing, said:

“Our vision at Arbour Housing is to support local communities and improve people’s lives. To do this, we must increase the number of affordable homes around Northern Ireland, which is why this new development plan, supported by a financial package from Danske Bank, is needed.

“Arbour is investing £7.5m into the new housing development in Buncrana Road in Derry. Provision of this new, high-quality housing stock will help meet the high demand for social housing in the area. The scheme features a wide range of one to four bed properties, which will be suitable for a range of families.”

Paul Herbison, Corporate Banking Manager at Danske Bank, said:

“The demand for affordable housing remains high across Northern Ireland and Danske Bank is delighted to be providing support for Arbour Housing as it rolls out its new development programme. The company is aiming to deliver high-quality, affordable homes to communities in a number of different areas, including the north west, and we look forward to watching the developments progress over the coming months.”

Arbour Housing has entered into a design and build agreement with Derry-based developer EHA Group to deliver the Buncrana Road scheme.

Jordan Allingham, director of EHA Group, said:

“It is evident that the Derry city area has been underserved in recent years when it comes to quality and affordable housing needs. EHA are delighted to be part of the bigger picture by working in partnership with Arbour to alleviate these demands by providing a mix of 98 high-quality homes and apartments on the Buncrana Road.”

Arbour Housing is continuing to grow, with new housing provision becoming available in Belfast, Lisburn, Newtownabbey, Omagh, Newry, Lisburn and Derry/Londonderry.