News release from 05/09/2019
Council to make multi-million-pound investment in 81 new Council homes in Northstowe
South Cambridgeshire residents are set to benefit from a development of new Council homes at Northstowe. All 81 ‘designer’ apartments will be either 1- or 2-bed and available at affordable rent, including 60 that will be age-exclusive apartments for the over 55s.
They are being created as part of Homes England’s first neighbourhood at Northstowe – a development of 406 homes by award-winning regeneration company Urban Splash.
The new apartments will be built using Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) in which homes produced in factories are assembled on-site at the development. MMC enables home-building to be quicker and, with less chance of inconsistency in quality, to have better environmental performance.
The successful bid for the 81 homes enables South Cambridgeshire District Council to deliver its objectives to double the number of energy-efficient Council homes it builds annually and to provide homes that are affordable to live in.
It also supports the Council’s pledge to become zero carbon by 2050. The new construction methods will drive decarbonisation, ensuring more homes in the district have higher levels of thermal and energy efficiency and cost less to run.
Cllr Hazel Smith (pictured below), South Cambridgeshire District Council’s Lead Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “We are really excited to have succeeded in our bid to deliver these much-needed homes, increasing our overall Council House portfolio. Importantly, working with Homes England and Urban Splash on what is our first large-scale MMC project enables us to offer residents cutting-edge, designer Council homes that will actively tackle the risk of fuel poverty, making them truly affordable for people to live in.
“With 60 of the new homes catering to the over 55s we want to work with Urban Splash to develop an exemplar scheme that promotes active lifestyles, supporting residents to live safely and independently for as long as possible. This work will build on our existing community development projects in Northstowe and will support inter-generational relationships across the community. Essentially, all of the 81 new homes will be better for our residents and communities, as well as for the planet.”
Paul Kitson, Director for Markets, Partners and Place at Homes England said: “We support the ambition of local authorities to address housing challenges and make sure more homes are built, more quickly, in the areas where they’re needed most.
“South Cambridgeshire District Council has an in-depth understanding of local housing demands – appointing them as our affordable homes provider will ensure Northstowe becomes a community that meets the needs of all its residents.”
Nathan Cornish, Director at Urban Splash, said: “We’re excited about being a new entrant to the Cambridgeshire housing market. Our award winning, design-led housing, built by Modern Methods of Construction, will offer something new in Northstowe. Our homes will be widely available and accessible to a range of residents; so we are delighted therefore to be working with our long term partner Homes England, as well as our new partners at South Cambridgeshire District Council, to deliver our simple vision to create great homes for all.
“These homes form part of our wider plans to bring more than 400 interesting and pioneering homes to Cambridge."
Homes England is leading a long-term project to deliver 8,500 new homes in the centre of Northstowe new town by 2040. 406 homes will be built under Homes England during its first phase of work at Northstowe, with developer Urban Splash appointed by Homes England in May 2019 to build all 406.
South Cambridgeshire District Council was successful in its bid to Urban Splash to secure all 81 of the Affordable Homes available under the first phase of work, and the decision to invest was approved at the Council’s Cabinet meeting (Wednesday 4 September) and will come into effect unless called in.
It is anticipated that work will begin on the Urban Splash homes in spring 2020, subject to planning permission.
*Images © Urban Splash