Work has begun on a £2.5m project for new social housing for elderly people in the latest phase of a partnership between a building firm and a community organisation.
Construction and development specialist Southdale Homes is building 24 new bungalows in South Durham for livin – formerly Sedgefield Borough Homes.
The developments, in Ferryhill and Spennymoor, are part of a £5m investment programme by livin to modernise its housing stock to provide homes for its elderly tenants.
The sustainable homes will reduce the residents’ energy costs by up to a quarter.
At Cleves Cross in Ferryhill, Southdale is building 12 two-bedroom bungalows, with a further 12 being developed at Grayson Grange, Spennymoor. The homes are all expected to be completed in the summer of 2014.
The Cleves Cross project is a £1.2m project, with the Grayson Grange scheme a £1.3m contract.
Across the two sites, Southdale expects to create and sustain local apprenticeships in numerous trades as part of the livin futures employability programme.
Trudie McCormick, Southdale’s regional director for the North East, said: “These homes will help revitalise housing on these two sites, ensuring the housing stock there meets the needs of existing residents.
“We are very happy to be working with livin on these projects, continuing the development of a growing relationship which is helping Southdale to build its presence in the North East.”
Ian Brown, head of development and allocations for livin, added: “The new bungalows will offer elderly tenants modern spacious homes that are affordable to run and easy to look after.
“We’re already experiencing lots of inquiries and expect to see a high demand for the properties.”
The latest construction contracts follow consultation which showed decreasing demand for traditional sheltered housing schemes and the redevelopment of existing schemes to make way for more sustainable homes.
Southdale has a strong pedigree in completing housing projects in County Durham. Last autumn, having completed 14 two-bedroom homes in Newton Aycliffe as part of its first contract for livin, it began two further developments with a combined contract value of more than ï¿½3m.
With its North East premises at Faverdale North, Darlington, Halifax-headquartered Southdale has 25 years of technical expertise and experience in the social and residential housing and public build arena.
The company has delivered in excess of ï¿½250m worth of successful mixed-tenure schemes across Yorkshire and the Humber, the North West, North East and Midlands.
Since it was formed in 1988, the company has experienced substantial and sustained growth through partnerships with more than 60 housing associations and registered social landlords, and by entering into a range of strategic framework agreements.
Last year, Southdale teamed up with housebuilder Strata to create Ignite Homes, which has been included in the Government’s Homes and Communities Agency’s new delivery partner panel.