Council selects Lovell for £22m Queens Park redevelopment
Housing regeneration specialist Lovell has been selected by Blackpool Council as preferred developer for a £22 million redevelopment programme which will transform the town’s Queens Park housing estate into a vibrant new neighbourhood.
Residents have been closely involved in the development of the scheme which will see 198 contemporary, high-quality houses and apartments built on the council-owned estate over the next six years, replacing five tower blocks and other existing homes which are set to be demolished. Construction work is expected to start in summer 2013.
Designed by Condy Lofthouse Architects, the new low-rise scheme will provide 180 homes for the council, which will be managed by Blackpool Coastal Housing (the council’s arm’s-length management organisation), and 18 properties for open market sale by Lovell at this key location, close to the town centre.
Cllr Gillian Campbell, Cabinet Member for Housing and Public Protection, says: “I’m delighted that the Lovell plans have been chosen for the new Queens Park. We’ve worked closely with existing tenants to help shape the designs and to create a new estate that will help build on the existing community.
“The skyline of Blackpool will change forever when the tower blocks are demolished but these plans show a much brighter future where people will be living in good quality accommodation. No longer will there be drafty windows and inadequate heating, families will be able to live in properties that will improve their health and help them to prosper.
“The development will also offer job opportunities for local traders and apprentices which are much needed in the current climate.”
Lovell regional director Nigel Yates says: “Our team has a strong track record in delivering high-quality, sustainable housing developments and we are proud to have been chosen as preferred developer for the new Queens Park. We believe it will set a new standard for well-designed housing in Blackpool, providing superb, contemporary homes for existing residents as well as attracting new people to the area.”
Existing Queens Park residents have been offered the opportunity to stay on the estate and move into one of the new homes. The scheme will also generate important job and training opportunities for local people, including construction trade apprenticeships. As part of its commitment to creating a lasting legacy of benefits for local communities, Lovell will join forces with the Blackpool Build Up project – a partnership between Blackpool Council and Blackpool and The Fylde College – to find jobs and training placements for local unemployed people to work on the scheme.
The new development will be made up of 108 two-, three- and four-bedroom houses and 90 apartments, 60 of which have been specially designed to convert to 30 family homes at a later stage.
Designed to integrate with the surrounding neighbourhoods, the development will be ‘tenure blind’, with homes built from the same range of high-quality materials whether affordable or for sale, ensuring a seamless appearance. The design features the selective use of glazed colour bricks in blue, red or green making a distinctively modern statement against the cool, neutral tones of the rest of the brickwork. A sleek standing seam roof finish will be used on all properties, and will also wrap some high level elevations. The development is made up of a series of formal urban squares with trees set to mark a pedestrian route connecting to the wider neighbourhood. In line with the scheme’s focus on promoting an inclusive, sustainable community, there will be a community garden. The scheme has also been designed to improve and make much better use of the open space on Layton Recreation Ground.
A host of energy-efficient features ensure that the houses and apartments meet Level 3 of the Code for Sustainable Homes, the system for assessing properties’ environmental performance. Materials have been chosen for enhanced thermal performance and low-air leakage while the homes will benefit from low-energy ventilation systems and high-efficiency condensing boilers.