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Top 60: Regeneration Schemes of the Year

Inside Housing is showcasing the best 60 developments of the last year. This year, our list is split into 10 categories of excellence which we will reveal over the next few weeks. Michael Atherton reports on the best regeneration schemes of the year

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A word from the sponsor

David Whitfield

Evinox Energy is proud to support the Top 60 Developments 2015, which recognise and celebrate the fantastic achievements of those involved in providing housing in the UK.

This category of best regeneration projects is of critical importance. As more of the UK’s housing stock ages,  it is vital that we regenerate and renew developments to improve the quality of life for residents, increase the number of available homes and create more energy efficient dwellings.

The developments recognised in this shortlist show some of the best work being done in this regard.

Evinox Energy specialise in providing integrated communal heating solutions - from initial survey to system design, product supply, ongoing trouble-free maintenance and a comprehensive support package including energy metering, billing and a revenue management service.

With more than 12 years of experience in the communal and district heating market, Evinox Energy has been involved in the design and supply of equipment for many projects for both private and social housing schemes.

We have seen an increase in the refurbishment of existing developments to include district or communal heating systems, which minimises the carbon footprint compared to individual heating systems and can reduce resident’s energy bills significantly.

David Whitfield, managing director, Evinox Energy

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The judges

  • Simon Nicol, director, Building Research Establishment
  • Andrew Eagles, managing director, Sustainable Homes
  • Joanna Embling, sole practitioner, Joanna Embling Property Consultant
  • Matthew O’Connell, senior policy officer, British Property Federation

The judges will choose an overall winner in this category, to be announced on Friday 16 October in London

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Bow Cross

“Creative investment in infrastructure and re-design is helping to transform a difficult and formerly cut-off area of east London into a thriving, mixed community.”

Simon Nicol, director, Building Research Establishment

Number of homes in development: 383 new and 296 refurbished

Cost: £120m

The scheme: This estate in Tower Hamlets used to be isolated and characterised by poor quality housing and high crime levels. A 12-year regeneration by 11,000-home Swan Housing Association has improved the physical and social infrastructure.

The project involved building 383 new homes. Three existing tower blocks were refurbished, ensuring that lifts serve all floors and there’s now a 24-hour entrance lobby. Communal gardens provide secure playgrounds.

A mix of different tenures enabled all residents who wished to remain on the estate to do so, while also bringing in new residents into a range of property types (one-bedroom flats to large family homes). Tree-lined streetscapes replaced concrete aerial walkways along with a new road and re-opened pedestrian routes.

 

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Park Central

“A large, exciting renewal project which is transforming a run-down area of central Birmingham into a showpiece of bold architecture and attractive parkland.”

Simon Nicol, director, Building Research Establishment

Number of homes in development: Almost 2,000

Cost: £270m

The scheme: Park Central was infamous for being labelled ‘Europe’s worst slum’ by its own residents, but is now recognised as a flourishing, desirable community on the edge of Birmingham city centre. The partially complete regeneration of the 59-acre site will provide almost 2,000 new homes (25% affordable, exact tenure not disclosed) around parklands, office, retail, school and leisure facilities. Demolished homes were recycled as foundation material. New homes benefitted from large wall-to-ceiling windows and a dual aspect, allowing natural light to flood living spaces. Balconies and terraces provide parkland views plus gardens in the development by house builder Crest Nicholson.

Safety was a priority for the scheme and addressed via an open landscape bordered by innovatively designed buildings. Strategic placement of external lighting and active frontages deter anti-social behaviour so residents can enjoy walking without worry. Eight acres of park replace dense derelict buildings and host a number of outdoor events.

 

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North Prospect

“Ambitious scheme to transform a poorly performing social housing estate into a thriving mixed tenure community. The high energy efficiency standards and low running costs are commended.”

Simon Nicol, director, Building Research Establishment

Number of homes in development: 1,164 new and 302 refurbished

Cost: £126m

The scheme: North Prospect is a phased, 10-year programme two miles north of Plymouth city centre. 1,107 new mixed tenure homes (481 market sale, 363 affordable rent, 90 social rent and 173 shared ownership) replaced 608 demolished homes of which 76% were social rent. The project had a net increase of 395 homes of mixed tenure, increasing house densities from 30 dwellings per hectare to 50 dwellings. A further 287 social rented homes are being refurbished to give a minimum additional life of 30 years.

Residents of the Plymouth Community Homes estate moving into energy efficient new or refurbished homes have had bills reduced by a third. Parents reported improvements in children’s health, happiness and their achievements at school.

 

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Anfield Regeneration

“A brave and innovative approach to urban renewal in a deprived area which focuses on the needs of - and benefits for - the local community.”

Simon Nicol, director, Building Research Establishment

Number of homes in development: 204

Cost: £23m

The scheme: A partnership between Your Housing Group, Liverpool City Council and Liverpool Football Club is regenerating the Anfield area and has delivered 177 new homes and refurbished 27, with an investment programme worth more than £23m so far.

A range of developments include new and refurbished housing, the development of ‘96 Avenue’, a major public space named in honour of the Hillsborough victims, the expansion of Liverpool Football Club’s Anfield stadium, a new public square including new commercial and retail premises, a new hotel, a range of developments to complete the restoration of Stanley Park and new retail premises along the high street.

 

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Richmond Park

“Re-modelling and refurbishment of a drab social housing estate into something much more attractive and sustainable, reflecting the needs and preferences of the local community.”

Simon Nicol, director, Building Research Establishment

Number of homes in development: 48 new and 405 refurbished

Cost: £17m

The scheme: Richmond Park was predominantly a social rent estate of more than 400 homes. Now it has been transformed from dull grey to attractive homes with a brick finish, timber cladding and colourful render with upgraded communal heating systems, new roofing, windows and doors.

The Great Places Housing Group development involved changing the street layout, with some homes ‘turned around’ to create traditional streets. Seventy-eight poor quality and unsustainable one-bedroom flats were demolished. While 405 homes were refurbished, 48 were built, leaving 87 affordable rent, 343 social rent and 23 leaseholders.

 

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Isobel Place

“Well-executed refurbishment of old industrial/civic buildings. Great workmanship offers homes where there were none before and improves the visual appeal, security and property values.”

Simon Nicol, director, Building Research Establishment

Number of homes in development: 109

Cost: £25m

The scheme: Isobel Place provides 109 high-spec affordable homes in a mix of 68 shared ownership and 41 social rent housing. It’s set around two green courtyards and built on the site of a derelict former depot behind Grade II listed Tottenham Town Hall, which was in a state of partial disrepair and listed as ‘at risk’ by English Heritage.

The town hall and the depot site were redeveloped by 8,000-home Newlon Housing Trust. One of the workshops has been fully restored, re-using 16,000 original bricks, and has been converted into social rented larger family homes at the heart of the site. The original clock tower has been recreated on top of these homes.

 

 


Read More

Inside Housing to identify the Top 60 housing developmentsInside Housing to identify the Top 60 housing developments
The cream of the cropThe cream of the crop
Top 60 Developments: Best Designed Developments of the YearTop 60 Developments: Best Designed Developments of the Year
Top 60 Developments: Extra Care Developments of the YearTop 60 Developments: Extra Care Developments of the Year
Top 60 Developments: winners announcedTop 60 Developments: winners announced

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BOW CROSS 643px
NORTH PROSPECT 643px
ANFIELD REGENERATION 643px
RICHMOND PARK 643px
ISOBEL PLACE 643px
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