Right on point - a new response to rental demand
Award winning development for the private rented sector sets the benchmark for future schemes in partnership with public landowners.
Highpoint Project summary
Newington Butts Developments Ltd
Peabody Trust and Realstar
- Start date
- January 2015
With demand for rental properties in London increasing, this new development, which forms part of a regeneration project in south east London, will offer opportunities to the housing market that could set the scene for future city living.
Working with the Greater London Authority (GLA) as the development manager, and design and build contractor, we are creating the largest private rented sector development on government land. Our aim is to produce a mix of affordable housing and long-term private rental accommodation.
Investment has been the key to the success of the project so far. After it had been stalled for a few years, we reignited the development and got it back on track by investing our own equity. We then worked with the Peabody Trust, a major housing association, to secure a deal for affordable rented and shared ownership properties.
A partnership with Realstar, a real-estate investment and management company, completed an early landmark deal for the development, setting a precedent for international long term investment into the UK’s housing market.
Rental contracts with Realstar, as opposed to individual investors, will offer residents long term stability and professional support.
Points of note
ComplexitiesTo secure the right partner, we had to manage complex lease structures and other deal constraints, such as the finite completion date set by the GLA.
We also had to contend with the issue that the original design for the tower was flawed. This meant we had to revise the planning permission to increase the height of the tower and redesign it so that the building services aspects could function fully to current regulations. The redesign brought the added advantage of better floor to ceiling heights that had originally been designed too low. During this time, we worked closely with the Peabody Trust to ensure that the designs stayed true to the original intent of shared ownership and the social for rent product, contained under the planning and Section 106 agreement.
Saving time and moneyApartment utility cupboards and the bathrooms have been constructed as modules off site, and the terrace building will have a sustainable cross-laminated timber structure. The tower superstructure uses pre-cast concrete components that will also reduce time on site.
CommitmentThroughout the deal, we remained committed to delivering a fully PRS-led scheme for the GLA, despite press speculation that the flats would be sold on the open market. Although this would undoubtedly have been the easy option, we stayed true to our pledge to the GLA to find a way to secure a quality rental product in the market and make it a first for the GLA, as well as the most high profile project of its type in the UK.
“Mace is committed to helping shape sustainable cities through smarter infrastructure and better buildings. This fantastic development will help deliver the Mayor’s vision for future living in London, a completely new type of rental offer in the London market, and we are proud to play our part.”