230 new homes and huge social value program for London’s iconic Portobello Road

Peabody’s construction of an additional 230 homes at Portobello Square is well underway - with 119 affordable homes another step closer for the community.

The not-for-profit housing association held a ‘topping out’ ceremony on Thursday 23 November with lead Contractor Bouygues UK. The event marked the completion of the roof on Phase 2b – the penultimate phase of the Wornington Green estate regeneration. The ongoing regeneration of Wornington Green will ultimately provide more than one thousand homes – nearly 600 of which will be affordable.

In this second phase, Peabody is building 230 new homes including apartments, duplexes, and mews houses. Of these, 119 are affordable, with 108 social rent homes for existing residents on the estate at their current rent levels. The remaining homes are market sale, to fund the provision of social homes in one of London’s priciest post codes.

The first residents will move into the new homes in autumn 2024. Many already lived on the estate with their families and are adults who have now been given their own separate tenancies – giving them their independence while keeping the community together.

All homes will be powered by air source heat pumps, helping to reduce CO2 emissions while providing a more energy efficient system for residents and reducing their energy bills. The project also includes 5,000 sq. foot of brand-new commercial space. Construction contractor Bouygues UK will deliver the new Peabody homes alongside a huge social value program that is already benefitting the community.

Peabody and Bouygues UK have rolled out a wide range of activities for the community, from employment opportunities to fun days out. Employees from both organisations are volunteering their time to support the community with workshops on DIY, digital inclusion, and employment. The team is helping students at the local school with their CVs and interview techniques, while promoting the benefits of a career in construction.

Bouygues UK aspires to change the low ratio of women to men in the construction industry. They have been raising awareness and encouraging the women of Wornington Green to explore a career in construction - through presentations, careers talks, CV preparation workshops and a networking brunch with female employees.

Phil Jenkins, Executive Director of Development at Peabody, said: “Portobello Road is one of the most iconic roads in London, with a diverse, vibrant community. But it’s an area in high demand and in serious need of affordable homes. Portobello Square offers more than a thousand high-quality homes for the community – 60 percent of which are affordable.

“Many larger families were outgrowing their homes on the previous estate. So, we’re particularly pleased to be able to offer some adults from those families their own tenancies as part of this redevelopment.

“It’s equally important that we provide a fantastic social value program that offers significant community benefits. We enjoyed spending time with residents over the summer and look forward to running more events in future.”

Fabienne Viala, Chair and CEO of Bouygues UK, said: “Bouygues UK takes such pride in working alongside Peabody on this project, supporting its ambition to reinvigorate this iconic part of London.

“The project is offering employment, training and social value opportunities which will enhance the lives of local people for years to come. Congratulations to everyone involved for reaching this significant milestone on a much-needed scheme that will deliver a considerable number of new homes.”

By Mark Adair – Correspondent, Bdaily

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