George Clarke explores the contradictions in government housing policy
So, the government has published a new, draft National Model Design Code (NMDC) to ‘bring back beauty’ to the way new-build homes and estates are built across the country.
Following on from the ‘Building Better Building Beautiful Commission’ that published its report in January 2020, the government has since appointed URBED, a design and research company based in Manchester, to produce a checklist of design principles to consider for new developments covering everything from urban design to street character, facades, building types, environmental design and well-being.
It’s perfectly understandable that many people are struggling to feel the Christmas spirit, as yet another year is added to the number of years of failure in housing policy. 2020 will definitely be one for the history books. Of course, the Covid pandemic naturally stole our focus, but in truth, there still exist a myriad of issues afflicting the housing sector that were around before the virus and will continue to make people’s lives difficult going forward if we do not come together as an industry to solve them. Housing Association Magazine’s Joe Bradbury takes a look at what the social housing sector needs in 2021.
With more than 85 years’ experience, Sidey is in the top 10 of the UK’s biggest fenestration companies. With all round expertise in commercial, new build, trade and domestic windows, doors, glazing and offsite construction, Sidey works with Housing Associations around the UK to deliver affordable homes to rent and buy.
Regeneration specialist Urban Union has been wholly acquired by Robertson Group, one of the largest family-owned construction, infrastructure and support services businesses in the UK.
Urban Union, established as a 50/50 joint venture in 2011 by Robertson Group and McTaggart Construction, was created in response to a substantial Town Centre Regeneration opportunity in Glasgow. Several similar opportunities followed, and Urban Union now delivers affordable and private housing in key regeneration areas across Scotland. It currently operates four developments – Laurieston Living and Pollokshaws Living in Glasgow, Pennywell Living in Edinburgh and Muirton Living in Perth.
The company is also working in partnership with Robertson and Queens Cross Housing Association delivering a 600-unit mixed tenure development at Hamiltonhill in Glasgow.
Social housing provider Stonewater has been named Legal & General Affordable Homes’ (“Legal & General”) largest management partner. Stonewater is supporting the organisation in delivering its ambitious development plan of building 3,000 homes by 2022, by leading on Legal & General’s housing operations across England.
The not-for-profit organisation is one of 14 housing organisations appointed as management partners to Legal & General. Stonewater is first expected to take over the management of 300 homes across England – in areas like Worcestershire, Warwickshire, Leicestershire, Hertfordshire and Central Bedfordshire – between now and March 2020, with another 700 to follow.
High specification windows and doors from AluK are at the heart of a recently completed residential development on Cardiff’s Bute East Dock which combines both new build apartments and affordable homes.
Schooner Wharf is the first open market scheme to be developed by Cardiff Community Housing Association (CCHA), who were working in partnership with main contractors Morganstone.
Wates Residential has extended its partnership with the housing association Orbit after being appointed to help deliver a £9.4 million project for new homes in the London Borough of Bexley. The national developer is working with Orbit to build the West Street redevelopment in Erith, south east London.
The proposed scheme will see vacant buildings including a former car parts warehouse replaced with a contemporary low-rise design including seven homes for London Affordable Rent, 14 homes for London Living Rent and 21 homes for Shared Ownership sale. The plans also include a car park with electric charging points and large community garden.