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TfL, Chapman Taylor and PLACE at Future Cities Forum's 'Housing 2021'

CGI of Chapman Taylor's Umbrellahaus modular housing scheme

Transport for London (TfL), Chapman Taylor and PLACE (Pan-London Accommodation Collaborative Enterprise) will be joining Future Cities Forum's 'Housing 2021' event this week. The discussion will look at next year's developments in housing provision in London and the UK, which models will be effective in the affordable housing market, and the GLA's backing of temporary housing in the capital for the homeless.

TfL will be talking about its development around Wembley Park Station that will provide important new housing for London.

The proposals, which have now been given the go-ahead, include new retail and public realm enhancements, which will help to enliven the area and give TfL new operational space. TfL and Barratt London - working together as a joint venture - have been given the green light by Brent Council to bring forward their new development by Wembley Park London Underground station. The proposals will deliver 454 new homes, including 40% affordable housing and the entire development will cover a 16-acre site and will be delivered across five buildings. The new homes will be a mixture of studio, one, two and three-bedroom properties, suited to all types of households, including first time buyers, families and downsizers. The affordable homes will be offered as a combination of intermediate housing, such as shared ownership, and London Affordable Rent.

The development also has a focus on sustainability - environmental, economic and social benefits - incorporated throughout. For example, with the exception of blue badge parking, the scheme will be car-free for residents, helping improve air quality in the capital in line with the Mayor's Transport Strategy. The location of the development, next to Wembley Park station, enables new residents to easily use sustainable modes of transport, as it is serviced by both the Jubilee and Metropolitan lines as well as a number of bus routes. The provision of cycle parking within the development will also encourage residents to saddle up when making journeys. With green and biodiverse roofs, the planting of new trees and hedges, as well as wildlife-friendly landscaping such as bird boxes and bee bricks included as part of the scheme, the designs aim to positively enhance the local environment. The development will also use renewable forms of energy through solar panels and air source heat pumps. The homes have been designed to encourage natural light within them and reduce energy usage; 70% of the homes are dual aspect and the remainder have been designed to ensure that they are not north facing.

TfL says it is vital that the development provides benefits for the neighbouring community as well as the new residents. The development will provide a new retail opportunity next to Wembley Park station, it will also make the public realm more appealing through additional planting, widening the pavement alongside the development - making it easier to walk - and providing play space for children in the community.

Emma Hatch, Senior Property Development Manager at TfL who will join our December discussion said:

'We are thrilled to get the go-ahead for our development at Wembley, which will deliver hundreds of new homes as well as a new retail opportunity and improvements to the community. This is the second project with Barratt London and builds on our track record for delivering much-needed new homes in the capital. Our first homes at Blackhorse View in Waltham Forest started selling earlier this year, showing our developments have been designed thoughtfully with both the community and residents in mind.'

These proposals form part of TfL's housing programme, which will provide 10,000 homes across the capital as well as a commitment to deliver 50% affordable housing on average across all sites brought to the market since May 2016. Work has already started on almost 1,500 homes in the capital, as the programme continues to build momentum.

Michael Swiszczowski, Director, UK at Chapman Taylor will join Emma to talk about the practice's ''Umbrellahaus', which is a sustainable, affordable off-site housing model which can be constructed at scale and speed to provide much-needed housing for communities within our towns and cities.

Modules are scaled for easy transport to site, with off-site construction providing factory conditions and encouraging clean, energy-efficient and accurate assembly. This method of delivery produces high-quality, lightweight, versatile construction which can be seamlessly integrated into the existing city fabric.

Umbrellahaus housing modules range from one-bed to three-bed family units and provide a choice of homes to reflect peoples' ability to pay and the different stages in their lives. All unit sizes generally follow the London Plan space standards, which can be reduced in size where appropriate to match market demands. With Umbrellahaus it is possible to upgrade to a one-bed from a micro or downsize to a one-bed from a three-bed when circumstances change, without leaving the community. The modules are thermally efficient, maximise daylight, minimise maintenance costs and encourage recycling.

Chapman Taylor believes that in order to achieve the step-change required in our industry, we need to be more open to collaborative working. The practice is currently collaborating with a wide variety of stakeholders in order to establish an 'umbrellagroup' approach to bringing forward developments. Umbrellahaus is seamlessly integrated within the city, taking inspiration from London's well-connected underground transportation system or Manchester's metrolink.

Scheme designs will be site and context-specific. Umbrellahaus is extremely flexible and can be expressed externally in a range of idioms. The cladding treatment will relate to the surrounding context, whether this requires a contemporary or a conservative response to the scale and rhythm of the existing buildings. Gyms, residents' lounges, micro-cinemas and laundrettes, will be included amongst other facilities to encourage community cohesion. The public realm will be enhanced through private amenity courtyards, recessed balconies, gardens and terraces to create the perfect living environment for Umbrellahaus residents.

Our third contributor to this week's discussion is Sir Steve Bullock, Chair of the Sutton Housing Partnership, Deputy Lieutenant for Lewisham and Chair of PLACE, which works with London Boroughs to provide temporary housing. PLACE (Pan-London Accommodation Collaborative Enterprise) is a new approach to tackling homelessness through acquiring modular temporary accommodation Homelessness has increased significantly across London since 2010.

Through PLACE, London boroughs will use modular housing units to increase the supply of high-quality, temporary accommodation options for people needing a home. PLACE's precision-manufactured homes will have the quality of permanent homes, meeting the London Plan's space standards, and can be moved from one site to another as required.

PLACE is being delivered by London boroughs, supported by the Greater London Authority, London Councils and London Ventures. Tower Hamlets is the lead borough for the programme. This is the first time UK local authorities are joining forces to acquire modular temporary accommodation. The accommodation will be placed on land which is currently under-used and is restricted by long-term development plans (these are known as 'meanwhile sites').

The GLA is providing £11 million from its innovation fund to support PLACE's work and Capital Ambition provided seed funding through the London Ventures programme. Established in May 2018, PLACE Ltd is a not-for-profit Company Limited by Guarantee and will act as the procurement and ownership organisation for the scheme. The first modular housing will be on site by 2021. PLACE's target is to have 200 homes across London.


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