L&Q was one of the first housing associations to enter into a strategic partnership with Homes England when the scheme was launched in 2018.
By being part of the partnership, it is receiving an £85 million grant to help deliver an additional 1,724 affordable housing starts by 31st March 2022.
Two years on, and Craig Luttman, Deputy Group Director of Development and Sales at L&Q, reflects: “The partnership has made it possible for us to provide more affordable housing to a broader range of young families across the Midlands, south east England and in the north west with Trafford Housing Trust. The clarity and the certainty on the forward availability of the funding is a big part of this – it has enabled us to accelerate schemes that would otherwise have been difficult to deliver.”
L&Q has been able to use the funding, alongside its established land portfolio, to facilitate the provision of more affordable homes, especially shared ownership homes.
Homes England and L&Q share the belief in the importance of Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) to help grow the sector as well as delivering housing more quickly and in a more environmentally sensitive way. The certainty of funding from the strategic partnership has also given L&Q the flexibility to participate in schemes involving MMC, such as the three-year Advanced Industrialised Methods for the Construction of Homes (AIMCH) project.
Bringing Barratt Developments plc, Stewart Milne Group, Forster Roofing, Construction Scotland Innovation Centre and the Manufacturing Technology Centre alongside L&Q, the AIMCH project hopes to tackle the challenges which are currently facing the housing sector, from the skills shortage to poor productivity and low affordability. It hopes to become a major player in the housing sector by identifying and developing the industrialised offsite solutions needed to meet current and future house building demands.
Its expected that AIMCH will result in new design tools, manufacturing advancements, improved new-to-market offsite systems and lean site processes. The end goal of the project is to support the housing sector by delivering 120,000 extra homes the Government estimates need to be built each year, by the same or less cost than traditional craft methods.
Through the strategic partnership, 100% of the homes which L&Q are building itself are using MMC, in addition to this, via the AIMC programme, L&Q are trialling a variety of additional offsite manufactured components at 25 homes at L&Q’s Saxon Reach.
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