PROPOSALS to replace ageing homes and garages in Coleridge ward with new highly sustainable homes, plus enhanced open space and community amenities nearby, have been approved by Cambridge City Council.
A total of 93 affordable new council-owned homes will replace the 33 existing dwellings and garages on the site at Fanshawe Road, with a minimum of 44 of the new homes to be made available for council rent and the rest at affordable rent below current average rental rates.
Proposals would see an enhanced open space and improvements to the existing community pavilion at the nearby Coleridge Recreation Ground, as well as better links between the Fanshawe Road housing and the park.
The existing homes at Fanshawe Road were built in the 1950s and it would not prove cost-effective to maintain or renovate them. The new homes will provide much-needed modern accommodation which is built to high sustainability standards, is gas-free and meets national guidelines for space.
Residents will be encouraged to put forward their ideas on what they would like to see in the new design for the open space and site in consultations being held on site in the next few months.
An engagement meeting with residents was held on 25 May to discuss initial proposals and the council has since been analysing the feedback received from questionnaires.
The council will work closely with the existing council tenants and leaseholders at Fanshawe Road to keep them informed about progress, and to help them find suitable alternative housing when the redevelopment takes place. Council tenants there have been offered the option of moving into brand new low-energy council homes at the Timberworks development on Cromwell Road.
The council will provide payments to tenants for the loss of homes and for moving costs, while leaseholders will be offered market rates for their homes plus up to 10% and assistance with moving.
The proposals, which will now be subject to planning approval, are part of the council’s ongoing programme to build 1,000 more new council homes in the coming years, in addition to more than 500 already completed or started.
Cllr Gerri Bird, Executive Councillor for Housing, said: “Committee approval for these new council homes at Fanshawe Road marks another significant step in our programme to build 1,000 highly sustainable new council homes in the city to meet the housing shortage experienced by so many people, and to help us meet our aim to be a net zero council and city by 2030.
“We acknowledge that there will be some upheaval for the current residents during the redevelopment, but we are determined to support them every step of the way to minimise disruption to their lives.”
A planning application for the development is due to be submitted later this year.
The site is expected to be developed through Cambridge Investment Partnership, the equal, 50:50 Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) between Cambridge City Council and Hill Investment Partnerships, set up to optimise the use of the council’s property through investment in residential, commercial, and other uses to achieve social and financial returns.
The executive councillor leading on this matter is Cllr Gerri Bird, (Labour) Executive Councillor for Housing. Spokespersons from the other political groups on this issue are Cllr Katie Porrer (Liberal Democrat) and Cllr Matthew Howard (Green/Independent Group)