A ‘GROUND BREAKING’ event has officially started the construction phase of Caerphilly County Borough Council and Linc Cymru’s (Linc) innovative development in Caerphilly.
Linc have been successful in their Welsh Government’s Innovative Housing bid to build more affordable homes. One of these developments will be the former Caerphilly Magistrate Court on Mountain Road creating a new-look, new-feel housing to supply more affordable and sustainable housing in a way that’s never been done before.
The innovation element to the scheme centres on construction techniques to achieve Passivhaus certification. The proposed scheme aims to demonstrate that traditional construction materials that Welsh contractors are already familiar with, can be used to create energy efficient carbon conscious housing. In turn this would improve occupant health and reduce fuel poverty without the need to rely on expensive add on technologies that require higher maintenance and would lead to higher service charges for residents. This will be the first large scale Passivhaus development in Wales.
Leading Welsh property and construction firm jehu Group will be building the scheme. Marc Jehu, Managing Director at Jehu Group commented: “We are excited to be constructing this Passivhaus scheme with Linc. The Housing Horizon strategy launched by CHCymru in 2017 believes we should be living in a Wales where good housing is a basic for all.
Building these energy efficient homes that people can afford to live in and want to live in, means we will play our part in delivering this strategy.”
Louise Attwood, Development Director for Linc says: “This is a really exciting development as it is the largest scale Passivhaus development and a chance to showcase its benefits. We hope that it is a chance for us to prove that innovation in design and construction is something that can be applied to the general housing market. The design has extreme benefits to the health and lifestyle of those who live there and we are thrilled to be working with Caerphilly Council and with the support of the Welsh Government Innovative Housing programme to bring this build to Caerphilly.”
On Tuesday, July 17, an event took place in Caerphilly to officially start the construction phase of the development – attended by representatives from Caerphilly County Borough Council, Linc Cymru, Welsh Government and Jehu Group, which will help deliver the scheme. Following a reception at the Caerphilly Golf Club, where artist’s impression plans were displayed, the event continued at the development site where the ground was officially broken – marking the start of the construction phase.
The development, which s being built by Jehu Construction, will include 34 flats and 4 general needs mid terrace houses. The development will also include an outdoor fitness area and edible elements within the landscaping to further improve residents’ health. The fitness equipment will also have the ability to charge a mobile phone. Residents will be encouraged to actively participate in these activities by working with local community groups who specialise in improving fitness.
The development is supported by Welsh Government’s Innovative Housing Programme – a programme which provides funding to demonstrator projects to help inform Welsh Government, housing associations and local authorities about the type of homes needed to meet future demand and address environmental issues. The innovative Housing Programme will deliver 5 Passivhaus schemes, creating an additional 96 units in its first year. The development in Caerphilly will provide 38 of the 96 units.
Cllr Lisa Phipps, the council’s Cabinet Member for Homes and Places, said “Delivering high quality affordable housing for local people is a key priority for the council. Key to delivering this is partnership working with organisations, such as Linc, combined with the support of Welsh Government. We are very pleased to see work begin on what will be the first Passivhaus development in the Caerphilly county borough. This innovative design will offer significant benefits to future residents and I look forward to seeing the completed development.”