The Mayor of London has approved plans for a 21-storey building in Croydon that will be constructed ‘off-site’ – one of the tallest schemes of its kind – with up to 100% affordable homes.
The decision is a boost for off-site construction – an approach that sees homes and their components built to specification in factories and then dropped in place on site. This approach allows for faster construction on site and has the potential to increase extra capacity in the industry.
Sadiq gave the green light to a development at Addiscombe Grove in Croydon, over 70% of which has been secured as affordable for first-time buyers to buy at a discount below the market price. The developer, Pocket Living, has further agreed in principle to make the remaining homes available for shared ownership, making all 153 homes genuinely affordable.
Last year, Pocket struck a deal with the Mayor for £25m of City Hall funding to support 1,059 new Pocket homes, a third of which are expected to be built off-site in a factory. This funding has helped Pocket build more high-density flats on brownfield sites.
The homes are expected to remain affordable for the lifetime of the building, with Pocket marketing and selling the homes to residents and workers in the borough. Pocket typically provide one or two-bed flats for first-time buyers. All units meet the space standards in the draft London Plan.
It is hoped that schemes like this will promote more off-site construction and encourage a wider range of Londoners to consider a career in the industry.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said, “Tackling London’s housing crisis requires bold new approaches. We know turning things round will take time, but off-site construction is an innovative way to speed up building the affordable homes our city needs. I invested in Pocket Living to help them build genuinely affordable homes that are sold to local people first.”
Marc Vlessing, CEO of Pocket Living, said, “We’re delighted that the Mayor has approved our exciting first scheme in Croydon. At Pocket, we always aspire to lead the way. Addiscombe Grove is a great example of this, where we are aiming to use modular construction to deliver homes faster and increase the genuinely affordable housing provided from 73% to 100%.
“Once again, the Mayor has shown his commitment to tackling the housing crisis through backing innovative solutions that deliver significant levels of affordable homes. We are proud to share City Hall’s vision for housing in the capital. A vision that we can help realise thanks to the recent £25 million investment from the Mayor that will see over a thousand genuinely affordable homes for Londoners started within the next three years.”
The homes being delivered by Pocket in this scheme for discounted market sale are affordable with a 5% deposit to households with a salary of £39,000, and they can only be sold to residents and workers in the borough.