Work has begun on a new 80 apartment Extra Care Living development in Didcot as part of the Great Western Park Urban Extension Scheme.
The three-storey scheme is being developed by Housing 21, a not-for-profit provider of retirement housing and extra care for older people of modest means. The organisation has appointed Midlands-based Deeley Construction as lead contractor.
The Greenwood Way development is expected to be completed in December 2022 and has received funding from the Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal.
Following completion, the scheme will provide 60 rented apartments and 20 shared ownership apartments for people over the age of 55.
There will also be on-site communal facilities such as a café/bistro, hair salon and communal lounge for both residents and the local community.
The scheme has been designed to be three linked blocks arranged around an internal courtyard, providing open, green space for residents.
It offers self-contained, private accommodation to support local older people and has been built with the changing needs associated with age in mind.
It is hoped that the development, which provides access to 24/7 on-site care if required, will promote independent living in a community setting.
Residents are expected to start moving in from early 2023.
Deborah Hope, head of Development at Housing 21, said: “We are delighted to bring our Extra Care offering to Didcot.
“We believe that generally there is a real need for this type of housing, but the current experience of living through the pandemic has highlighted the benefits of extra care even more.
“It enables people to continue to live independently, in their own safe space whilst receiving quality support both socially and with any of their care requirements.
“We are always mindful of how the construction process can help the local economy, and schemes such as these have an economic benefit for the longer term, as well as creating a great place for the community to come together.”
The project was secured by Deeley Construction via the Homes England DPP3 (Delivery Partner Panel) framework and will be finished to BREEAM Very Good standard.
Martin Gallagher, managing director of Deeley Construction, said: “It’s fantastic to be strengthening our partnership with Housing 21 and supporting with the delivery of this vital scheme for people in Didcot and surrounding areas.
“This is our second scheme with Housing 21, but we have a great history in delivering Extra Care schemes that meet the needs of the local community.
“It’s great to see our team on site and we are working with community partners to ensure minimal disruption caused by work in the area.”
Emily Smith, chair of the Oxfordshire Growth Board, said: “Affordable care developments like this make a huge difference to our communities – they allow older residents to downsize but still live independently, and at the same time free up much needed larger homes for local families.
“This development in particular is very close to many new facilities such as a new supermarket, pub, community centre, and good public transport links on Great Western Park; and it’s exactly the kind of approach to new housing we should be looking at providing.
“The Growth Board has worked really effectively in partnership to allow this to happen, with significant funding from the Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal, along with developer contributions provided by Vale of White Horse District Council.”
Oxfordshire Growth Board agreed a £215m Housing and Growth Deal with the government in 2018. Up to £60m of this funding supports the delivery of 1,322 affordable homes across Oxfordshire.
The affordable homes programme runs until March 2022 and delivers a range of affordable tenures, including shared ownership and homes for affordable and social rent to meet the needs of residents across the county.
Image: Artist’s impression of the scheme
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