More affordable homes for the boroughPublished Friday, 29th June 2018
Plans to build more affordable homes, some of which could be brought on site ready-made, are set to be looked at by Rotherham Council.
The Council is looking to build around 12 bungalows for older people through a pilot to test alternative modern construction methods.
This could include elements of off-site construction, ranging from buildings being erected from factory made frames, panels or sections to whole buildings being lowered onto site.
The brief will be left open with a view to getting the widest possible range of options to consider from manufacturing and building companies.
Council leaders are also looking at plans to sell some small sites to local developers to enable the building of a further 22 affordable homes in key areas across the borough. Together this will create 34 new affordable homes to be allocated through the Council housing process, supporting the Sheffield City Region (SCR) approach to using surplus public sector land.
Cllr Dominic Beck, Rotherham Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “The housing industry is recognising the potential offsite manufacturing holds for the housing market. As a modern and efficient council we want to ensure we look at all possible options to deliver inspiring, energy-efficient homes for families across the borough. Our mission is to build better homes and build them in a better way.
“We also want to ensure there are enough affordable homes so families can stay in the borough or to entice new people to move to Rotherham.”
The funding for the pilot modern construction homes is expected to come from the Council Housing Revenue Account (HRA) and an application has been made to Sheffield City Region’s pilot Housing Fund £500K of grant funding. This is currently being assessed with a view to seeking approval from the Sheffield City Region’s Housing Investment Board later this summer.
Colin Blackburn, SCR Assistant Director for Housing Infrastructure and Planning, added: “There is a national housing shortage across the UK, including here in Sheffield City Region. We welcome the local authority’s approach to delivering additional new homes through innovative and efficient ways of building, which will provide high quality, desirable properties in local communities at affordable prices.”
It is anticipated that employment opportunities will be created through the scheme, as the construction of offsite homes and delivery on-site offers the chance for a variety of new roles within the construction sector.
The plans are to be looked at by Rotherham Council’s Cabinet at its meeting in July.