A consortium between Thames Valley Housing Association (TVH) and Kier, to be called Evolution, has been has been named as the preferred bidder to deliver much needed family homes in Woking, Surrey. The contract, worth in the region of £80m, will commence in the summer of 2013 when final planning consent is expected to be granted for the new development.
TVH led Evolution’s bid to construct a mixed tenure development of 373 units of which 224 will be affordable homes for families within the Borough of Woking. The affordable homes will be delivered as a PFI contract worth £40.5 million. The remaining 149 properties will be sold to owner occupiers. The dwellings will consist of two, three and four bedroom houses in response to Woking’s need for family homes.
Geeta Nanda, CEO of TVH, said, “In the present economic climate, demand for housing far outstrips supply and the lack of bank finance has severely restricted housebuilders’ ability to bring forward new properties. This has contributed to a housing crisis of national proportions and now, more than ever, housing groups have a greater responsibility of finding ways to work with both the private and public sector to increase the supply. The provision of affordable housing has never been more important or necessary and our ability to deliver on projects of this kind has played a large factor in winning this significant contract.”
The affordable homes will be managed by TVH over the length of the 25-year PFI contract. During this period, the Council will make an annual contribution, which will be added to by government funding, alongside investment from Evolution. The combined funding will allow the rented homes to remain at affordable rent levels after the 25-year contract period, and onwards for the full lifetime of the homes.
Cllr David Bittleston, chairman of Woking Borough Council’s PFI Project Board, said, “I am delighted to announce Evolution as our preferred bidder for the Priority Homes housing development. There are many local people on our Housing Register waiting for decent, affordable social housing. This project will significantly help them and contribute to meeting the Council’s Housing Strategy through a step-change in the provision of affordable housing within the Borough.”
Nigel Turner, managing director of Kier Property, added, “We are thrilled to have been selected by Woking Borough Council to bring forward our exciting plans to create 373 new homes. The mixed tenure development will play an important part in addressing the area’s housing shortage and we look forward to working with Thames Valley Housing to progress the development.”
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