Labor members demand land guarantee in housing plan

Labor members have demanded the Victorian government guarantee it will not sell off public land as part of plans to knock down and rebuild Melbourne's public housing towers.

All 44 of the city's high-rise public housing buildings are set to be redeveloped by 2051, with five in Flemington, North Melbourne and Carlton expected to be replaced by 2031.

The plan was a key pillar of the government's housing statement, unveiled by then-premier Daniel Andrews in September, and would lead to the relocation of more than 10,000 residents.

Labor conference in VIctoria
Victorian Labor members want the state government to build more public housing dwellings. (Con Chronis/AAP PHOTOS)

While the redevelopment plan would increase the number of residents living in the estates to 30,000, places reserved for social housing would only rise to 11,000.

A motion moved at the Victorian Labor State Conference on Saturday made it policy for the party's Victorian branch to push the government to take all reasonable steps to keep land on the 44 sites in public hands.

"In this state, we have 80,000 people on the (public housing) waiting list," Labor for Housing co-convenor Julijana Todorovic told the crowd.

"The current promise is that we will only be lifting social housing on these sites by 10 per cent."

The motion also urges the government to build an extra 8000 social housing dwellings across the state by 2028, reaffirm its commitment to no net loss of public housing and utilise surplus public land suitable for housing.

It passed unanimously.

Anthony Albanese
Housing was a focus of Anthony Albanese's pitch to party faithful at Labor's Victorian conference. (Con Chronis/AAP PHOTOS)

The public housing redevelopment plan, billed as Australia's biggest urban renewal project, has come under fire from some tower residents.

A class action against the Victorian government was dismissed on May 3 but a judge permitted residents to reframe their case.

The proposal has also garnered strong criticism from the state Greens.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese made housing a focus of his pitch to party faithful on Saturday, spruiking a $32 billion investment in social, public housing and affordable housing following Tuesday's federal budget.

"We are doing all this in spite of the opposition we've faced from the Liberals and the Greens," Mr Albanese said.

"The Liberals have a pathological problem with affordable housing, always have.

"And while the Greens ... talk a lot about housing, the only thing they want to build is their profile."