Joint housing scheme for underused garage site to be discussed

February 18, 2021

A joint housing scheme to replace an underused garage site with homes is to be discussed at cabinet (item 10, Tuesday 23 February).

The report outlines how the Council proposes to lease the land in Juniper Road, Leigh-on-Sea, to The Salvation Army in Southend. The charity would then use the homes for people who are moving on from homelessness and temporary accommodation.

Subject to securing planning permission, the homes would be donated and constructed by Foundation 200, who selected Southend-on-Sea as one of the authorities to benefit from the donation of up to eight, one-bedroom homes.

Cllr Ian Gilbert, leader of the council with a responsibility for housing said: “If agreed and subject to securing planning permission, thanks to the Hill Foundation 200 Project and The Salvation Army, this project would see up to eight new homes in Southend-on-Sea for people who are moving on from homelessness and temporary accommodation. This will be their next step to becoming independent.

“At the moment the disused garages attract anti-social behaviour, fly-tipping and vandalism. I’m sure many residents will be glad to see this proposal to put the land to better use and at minimal cost to the Council.”

The garage site on Juniper Road only has two out of 31 garages currently being rented and the Council will be working with these garage tenants to find alternatives. If agreed, the land will be leased to The Salvation Army for a peppercorn rent for ten years.

Subject to planning permission, the modular homes would be supplied and installed as part of the award-winning developer Hill’s Foundation 200 programme, launched in 2019 to mark the company’s 20th anniversary – a £12m initiative to help provide a solution to homelessness by delivering 200 specially designed and fully equipped modular homes over the next five years. The homes are built in a British factory and delivered fully furnished.

The Salvation Army, Southend, will then use those homes to help people who are moving on from homelessness. The people housed in the properties will have low to medium support needs, and will be given tailor-made support to help them continue with their fresh start, including opportunities with education and employment settings.

Hill have designed their modular units with the help of a number of leading homelessness charities to ensure they meet the needs of homeless clients who may not have had access to private space for some time. The homes have running costs of less than £5 a week and are designed to Future Homes Standards, exceeding building regulations for energy efficiency and sound insulation, and with a design life of 60 years


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