Work has started on a site at Eccles New Road, Salford, to build eight new move-on homes for the homeless. The Eccles New Road site is the first of two sites in Salford to deliver critically needed homes as part of the Government’s Rough Sleeping Accommodation Programme, known as RSAP. The Eccles New Road site also incorporates six affordable 2-bedroom houses.
Like many boroughs, Salford has seen an increase in homelessness since 2012. This includes sofa surfers, rough sleeping, unstable accommodation, or people at risk of homelessness or struggling to keep a home. Salford City Council, Identity Consult and Architects Buttress are working towards this by developing the two sites, the current one at Eccles New Road and one in the development pipeline in Weaste. The move-on homes are specifically designed to provide all the elements of a home in a small, compact design. The aim is to provide the occupier with a comfortable and secure base from which to establish themselves with an address, a bank account and through to employment.
Commenting on the project Salford City Mayor, Paul Dennett said:
“As part of our long term strategy to ensure that everyone has a home, this is a key project start on site for Salford. This project is a crucial part of the Rough Sleeping Accommodation Programme and reflects our dedication to addressing homelessness.”
The design team at Buttress Architects worked with the local charity, Loaves and Fishes and Salford’s homeless community to ensure that the designs worked for the individuals. The scheme aims to create a genuine home that will prepare occupants for fully independent living. To achieve this the new homes use domestic housing references in their design. The two-storey self-contained apartments have pitched roofs and are clad in red brick to correlate with the local area. Each unit will have its own front door and open-plan living areas, and whilst ground-floor units have level access the upper-floor apartments open to a shared deck and stair. Sustainability is a key focus for the development and the apartments have been designed to be low-energy, low-carbon homes that will keep running costs low. The design has provided a sense of dignity, security, stability and importantly a sense of home.
Commenting on the design, Ben Tabiner, from Buttress said:
“From the very beginning, we approached the design by including all the normal elements that a domestic house would have ensuring that the occupant feels valued and secure. Another important element was to ensure that each unit had its own front door, which not only gave a sense of home but enabled the occupier to have a formal address and therefore a bank account and employment opportunities.”
Identity Consult will act as Project Manager and Employer’s Agent for the sites and has procured PLP as the main contractor.
Speaking of the news, Identity Consult director Alex Atkinson said:
“We have been working with Salford Council for a number of years to bring sites such as this back into use. As a local resident I am especially pleased to be part of this project which will create much-needed housing for those in our community that are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Identity Consult has long been motivated to deliver housing for the people in our society who need it the most. As part of this commitment, we have committed to a number of social value initiatives and will be engaging with homelessness charities, along with other initiatives to provide advice and support to residents of Salford.”
The homes are due to be completed in the summer 2024.