A specialist housing scheme in Poole aimed at supporting homeless people has been completed and welcomed its first residents.
The £3.5m award-winning project on Herbert Avenue, was constructed by Poole-based developer AJC Group, working in partnership with Bournemouth, Christchurch, and Poole (BCP) Council.
The purpose-designed eco-focused scheme was funded by BCP Council to create 24 ‘move on’ homes for local people who are currently homeless, and require a stepping-stone between hostels and independent living.
The project was officially opened with a ribbon cutting event. Councillor Vikki Slade, leader of the council and portfolio holder for dynamic places, was joined by Kieron Wilson, portfolio holder for housing, and ward councillors Tony Trent, Adrian Chapmanlaw, and Rachel Maidment. David Cracklen, director at AJC Group, also attended the ceremony.
Councillor Wilson, portfolio holder for housing and regulatory services, said: “Our long-term vision is to end homelessness across Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole, working with our partners to achieve this.
“This new development will be vital in providing much needed ‘move on’ accommodation for families and individuals who really need it, and with really good eco-standards that will benefit everyone who lives here, this highlights a successful working partnership with AJC Group to construct these much-needed new homes.”
Located on the site of the former Bourne Valley Community Centre, the purpose-designed apartment buildings feature self-contained apartments, three of which are wheelchair accessible.
The site also includes 15 parking spaces, a bike store and a communal garden. The scheme has been meticulously designed to meet Low Passivhaus accreditation, ensuring the highest levels of energy efficiency and thermal performance. This will keep running costs and any energy bills for occupiers to a minimum.
David Cracklen, director of AJC Group, said: “With Poole and Sandbanks being such a tourist hotspot, the need for homeless accommodation might not be at the forefront of people’s minds. However, the high cost of living here and increasing rates of homelessness mean schemes like this are so vital.
“We are extremely pleased to have partnered with BCP Council on this project and completed the construction to such a high standard. Obtaining the funding for such an innovative project was a huge undertaking and it is a credit to the council’s innovative thinking and approach. It’s rare to see a housing development built to this exacting Low Passivhaus specification, due to the increased time and meticulous attention to detail required. This is our first scheme built to Low Passivhaus standards and we couldn’t be prouder of our achievement here.”
Main image: Vikki Slade, leader of BCP Council cuts the ribbon top officially open the Herbert Avenue scheme. Credit: Paul Jacobs/pictureexclusive.com
Read next: Welcome visit for Pontesbury housing scheme
Are you a social housing professional? Sign up for a FREE MEMBERSHIP to upload news stories, post job vacancies, and connect with colleagues on our secure social feed.