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Business & Economy

Housing development hailed ‘an impressive project’ by Sunderland MP

A development of new, affordable homes in Sunderland has been hailed ‘an impressive project’ by a local MP, providing much-needed affordable homes for local people.

Julie Elliott MP visited Karbon Homes’ College Grange development at North Hylton last week to see how the new homes, located on the site of the former Sunderland College buildings, were progressing.

Accompanied by colleagues from Karbon and main contractor, Esh Construction, the Sunderland Central MP toured the housing association’s 105-home flagship development, viewing a number of first phase homes close to completion, as well as a selection still under construction.

Julie Elliott MP, said: “I am really impressed with the progress of the site so far. It’s well laid out, with plenty of space between the houses, and has a really nice feel to it. I’m looking forward to seeing everything finished and can already see that this will be a great place to live.”

Karbon is working with Sunderland City Council and Homes England to bring the £20m site to fruition.

On completion the site will comprise of bungalows for affordable rent and houses for Rent to Buy, a scheme which enables people to rent at less than the market rate so that they can save for a deposit to buy the property outright or through shared ownership.

Julie added: “There’s a real need for quality affordable housing like this, not just in Sunderland but across the North East. I commend Karbon’s approach, providing a mix of property types and sizes which cater for a wide audience, and having the option to move on to buy is a great model which I know will be welcomed by the local community.”

Julie was also given a tour of the site’s 30 homes constructed from light gauge steel, all of which were in varying stages of development. Light gauge steel is a modern method of construction offering a faster, more cost-efficient alternative to traditional bricks and mortar building.

She was also introduced to the landscaping plans for the site, which will incorporate opportunities for informal play and recreation. The intention is to create a neighbourhood focused around a linear park running down the centre of the site, including a Sustainable Urban Drainage (SuDS) scheme.

Zoey Hawthorne, Assistant Director of Development Delivery at Karbon Homes said: “We were delighted to have Julie visit the development, which is providing a range of much-needed, energy efficient, affordable homes for the people of Sunderland.

“College Grange is the largest development we have worked on to date, making it a real flagship project for us as a developer. The main aim of College Grange is to create a strong community and a great place to live, which we’re hoping to achieve with a mix of property types and sizes, which encourage inter-generational living, and high standards of landscaping and green space.

“It’s great to receive such positive feedback on its progress. It reinforces just how important our investment in new homes is.”

In late 2021 Karbon entered a strategic partnership with Homes England, which provided £131.5 million in funding to deliver 2,200 new affordable homes over the next few years.