Hundreds of new homes in housing boost for Lewisham

Besson Street will be developed Pic: Google Maps

A new housing project will create 300 private homes in New Cross which will aim to increase the amount of affordable housing and improve standards for private renters.

Property developer, Grainger PLC, has partnered with Lewisham Council to create 300-purpose-built private homes on Besson Street in New Cross.

Grainger said the contract also includes the creation of a GP surgery, pharmacy, office space for the New Cross Gate Trust and an outdoor gym.

Lewisham Council secured the project to increase the amount of social renting options in the area. The council said: “One in three people in Lewisham live in a household that rents from a private landlord. While many private landlords are excellent, not all are. Rent[ing] privately can be a bad and stressful experience. Tenancies often last for six months, not for life as is the case with social renting.”

The development is just a start for the council. A spokesperson said: “Our main priority is to create more housing at social rent. By 2022, we will have approved the building of 1,500 new council homes. However, we also want to improve standards for private renters.”

The new properties are aimed at residents who do not qualify for council homes. They are intended for people who have low to average incomes and no realistic chance of securing a council property.

Helen Gordon, CEO of Grainger, said: “This is an excellent project that will deliver high quality homes and several additional facilities for the local community. Residents will benefit from new homes and also Grainger’s commitment to customer service and expertise as the market leader in modern homes for rent.”

Out of the 300 new homes, 105 will be “genuinely affordable” based on the London Living Rent calculation, where rents are set based on average incomes. The other 195 will be let at market rent level.

Lewisham Council highlighted their partnership with Grainger was founded on a 50/50 basis, meaning decisions can only be made if both parties agree.

Dates for when the development will start and end will be announced in early 2019 when the official planning application has been processed.

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