Property firm to pay £1.2m rather than build ‘affordable’ homes at site in Hove

Posted On 14 Dec 2016 at 3:13 pm

A property firm is to pay £1.2 million rather than build eight “affordable” homes at a site in Hove where it is putting up 47 flats.

The money will be paid by Crest Nicholson to Brighton and Hove City Council after the council’s Planning Committee backed a deal this afternoon (Wednesday 14 December).

Crest has planning permission to build a block of 47 flats in Davigdor Road, Hove, which it is marketing as “Artisan” in “the desirable Seven Dials area of Hove”.

The “luxury one, two and three-bedroom apartments in vibrant Hove” are described as perfect “as an investment opportunity”.

But Crest said that the eight-storey block wouldn’t be viable if the company had to include affordable homes.

It said that it had been unable to find a housing association to manage the six rented flats and the two which were to be sold as part of a shared ownership scheme.

Money appears to have been the sticking point, with Crest wanting more than any housing association deemed realistic.

Yet Hyde Housing has planning permission for an eight-storey block on the site next door where 27 of the 68 flats are to be classed as affordable homes.

Councillor Leo Littman was concerned that accepting money from Crest to build the affordable homes off site risked the potential for ghettoisation.

He said: “It concerns me as a possible precedent. Nothing we have seen has relieved my concern.”

The Crest building will go up on the site which was until recently occupied by the Happy Cell – a fitness studio – and 26 rooms let for emergency accommodation.

Housing regeneration manager Sam Smith said that the money would help support the council’s New Homes for Neighbourhoods programme.

Mr Smith said that the council had a government-imposed borrowing cap which prevented it building homes as quickly as it would like.

With hopes of building 500 homes, Mr Smith added: “The future of the scheme will rely on alternative forms of funding to bring schemes forward.

“Any commuted sums could well be used to bring these schemes forward and that would be additional because we don’t have enough funds to bring all these schemes forward.”

Councillor Clare Moonan pointed out that the money from Crest would pay for more affordable homes than Crest had planned to build.

Crest Nicholson is also working with the council on plans to redevelop the King Alfred Leisure Centre site with hundreds of homes planned for the Hove seafront site as part of the scheme.

  1. Angus Reply

    Building work has already commenced at the site. The Happy Cell building has been demolished and a crane was constructed at the site this past Sunday.

  2. Rolivan Reply

    The précédent has been set.When the Sale of Kings House goes through they Will not want to build anything except luxury apartments,well ones that cost à fortune.The Council had an opportunity to develop it in à joint venture and used the profits to build truly affordable and Social Housing in places where Land is cheaper or they already own like at Craven Vale and Bates Estate.However Cllr Warren Morgan said that The Council
    aren’t developers when I suggested this to Him and yet à few months later all Parties agréé to do exactly that in à JV with Hyde,something is very wrong.Perhaps à Journaliste could get to the bottom of it?

  3. Daniel Harris Reply

    Sadly the leader of the Brighton and Hove District Labour Party Warren Morgan supports policies which assist the landlords and developers, his appointments on the planning committee needs more clarifying, these and the delivered council housing projects are nothing to boast about, right now these policies are 1997 -2010 Labour and do not reflect what the majority of members and some councillors want. There are tensions growing between councillors and some of these cuts being proposed, personally I’d be amazed if he gets another term.

    Times have moved on, the millions he’s proposing to be cut including in an already at crisis and critical point temporary accommodation funding. In just one emergency accommodation building we have had 5 deaths in a year, not reported.

    I founded ETHRAG the UK’s first Residents Association to reverse these habits and get across the message that Housing is a Basic Human Right. The City Council MUST Change there ways and Tracy John the Head of Housing Needs to Go. We have some shocking revenge and LGBT related issues coming out in 2017 plus the FOI report on the number of police cars being dispatched daily for incidents in these places. I praise only on Labour Councillor Clare Moonan.

  4. Windsor101 Reply

    BHCC in complicit with Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (mental health) in dumping many patients with long-term serious mental illness in “temporary, emergency” accommodation slums for months and years. They are substandard bedsits in poorly maintained, largely unsupervised, buildings that fail to meet all the prevailing standards for decent housing except for fire regulations. Several other councils in the South East also dump their least wanted in these places too and fail to adhere to requirement of the Housing Act to liaise with BHCC on “out of area” placements. If the “discharged” patients are lucky they might get an occasional visit from “support workers”. One HMO operator had 4 deaths in 14 months – all under the age of 55 years – one (MP aged 30) was recently featured in the Argus. It is no secret within the Housing department – Tracey John, Reid, Slatger, Peckham, all know and don’t care. They all just pretend it is not happening and rigorously defend the poor standards, lack of supervision, deaths, millions spent, etc. The coziness of the relationships between Housing department and the slum HMO landlords is troubling. Clare Moonan is right when she says “With the complex and often chaotic nature of the service users we would have to provide round the clock staffing/security with at least 2 staff members at any time We would have to manage issues relating to alcohol and substance misuse such as drugs and drug talking equipment which in a temporary setting may not be safe for staff or other service users . Considering the high risk in a temporary setting not designed for this, it is likely that our insurers may not cover staff and residents” (Argus Jan 2016). The CQC should be notified to go and review the conditions under which “discharged” seriously mentally ill people are housed.

  5. james Reply

    more homes the better…supply pushes down prices

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