Land earmarked for a school in south Auckland is to be developed for transitional housing.
Fifty-one homes will be built on the vacant Crown land for families on the social housing register to occupy before they move into permanent accommodation.
The 1.6ha site on Luke Street, Ōtāhuhu, will be developed into 27 two-bedroom, seven three-bedroom and 17 four-bedroom homes.
The Ministry of Education owns the land but Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett said it would not be using the site for several years so had leased it to Housing New Zealand.
She said the plan was an excellent use of the Crown's land resources in addressing the need for more emergency and temporary housing.
"Once complete the the development will provide temporary homes for up to 250 people at any one time, which translates to hundreds more places each year", Mrs Bennett said.
"We expect families to literally be moving in by February next year."
Mrs Bennett said there would be an on-site manager providing support and services to the tenants, and she was calling for community providers to manage tenants at Luke Street and other similar developments.
She told Checkpoint it was likely the tenants, most of them on benefits, would pay up to a quarter of their incomes to rent the homes.
"We've certainly budgeted to pay the market rent, and for the tenant to be paying a portion, she said.
"However, we have done deals in other areas like this when we've got them in transitionally, where we've instead used their 25 percent to help them pay off debt, which we are kind of open to in some situations," Mrs Bennett said.
The Ōtāhuhu development is to start next month, and the houses will stay on the Luke Street site for at least seven years before being moved to a more permanent site for future families in need.