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dudley mbc new homes programme

Nicol Thomas Ltd worked closely with Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council to deliver the Government’s National Affordable Housing Programme to increase the supply of affordable homes in England. Following our appraisal of 15 Local Authority owned brownfield sites (including old garage sites) in the borough, the Council were awarded HCA Funding to deliver over 80 homes for general needs and assisted living across six sites:

  • Norwood Road, Brockmoor
  • Blackthorn Road, Stourbridge
  • Tenacre Lane, Upper Gornal
  • Wood Road, Lower Gornal
  • Woodland Avenue, Quarry Bank

All schemes were designed to Building for Life, Lifetime Homes, Housing Quality Indicator, Code for Sustainable Homes level 4, Secured by Design, and the HCA ‘ s Design Quality Standards and all sites presented challenging conditions. Inherent in this was the requirement of quality, deliverability, sustainability, and value for money . A number of the sites were located in mining areas, had public service easements and large level differences. Some had challenging access issues and one had an underground sewerage storage tanks.

Public consultation established that a range of accommodation should be provided and so we designed a variety of houses ranging from two to four bedrooms, two bedroom bungalows, and apartments.

To achieve the design standards, all of the schemes included solar pannels, rainwater harvesting, high standard of insulation and air tightness, in some cases a timber frame and structural insulated panels. A contemporary design integrated these features and also allowed us to demonstrate that affordable housing can break the mould, being attractive and viable without loss of quality. This approach was supported by the Planning Authority and we worked closely with them attending design workshops that included highways, landscaping, urban design etc. We linked the outcomes of these meetings with the LA’s Building Maintenance, and Occupational Therapy Teams.

A ‘Homezone’ design was adopted for the external public areas in which the landscaping and car parking were integrated; where different surface finishes create interest and definition of the different activities. The intention was to restore the balance between traffic and communities allowing children to play safely outside their homes which would improve community interaction and neighbourliness.  It was also felt that these activities would reduce the likelihood for crime and anti-social behaviour.

key facts

  • Part of the Government’s National Affordable Housing Programme 2008-2011
  • Code for Sustainable Homes level 4
  • Garage and/or brownfield sites
  • Integration of special needs and general needs family housing

for more details contact:

  • Wendy Griffin on 01902 398222